Mar. 31, 2004 — AOPA President Phil Boyer took member concerns over plans to close and destroy a general aviation crosswind runway at Eugene, Oregon's Mahlon Sweet Field to Rep. Peter DeFazio (D-Ore.), local congressman and the ranking member on the House aviation subcommittee. In a meeting this week, Boyer told Rep. DeFazio that pilots regularly use the crosswind runway and that the FAA wind data used to validate the decision was outdated. Rep. DeFazio has committed to work with AOPA in finding a resolution that will meet the needs of local pilots.
AOPA has been working with local pilots to preserve the crosswind runway, since GA activity at the airport accounts for nearly 78% of annual operations. Earlier this week, AOPA Regional Representative Mike Ferguson moderated a meeting of local pilots, officials from the FAA and Oregon Aeronautics, as well as officials from the airport, to discuss concerns and search for other options. The meeting was also attended by Rep. DeFazio's district director, Karen Fore.