Texas continues to be in dire need of a new general aviation airport near Austin. Last Wednesday AOPA Southwestern Regional Representative Shelly Lesikar testified about that need before the Texas House Transportation Committee and later met with a few of the committee members.
"AOPA offers its resources and strength as a 407,000-plus member organization to promote and protect GA in the state," Lesikar said, "including helping find a site for a new Central Texas airport."
Lesikar told the committee that GA is not going away. In fact, it is growing rapidly in the state. The annual economic impact of GA in Texas is $6 billion, according to state Aviation Director Dave Fulton, who also testified before the committee.
AOPA has been working since the early 1990s to help find a site suitable for a new GA airport and just last year had supported a bill that would remove several artificial impediments based on existing law. While these changes were not controversial, lawmakers recessed before taking final action on the bill. AOPA plans to seek this legislative solution when the legislature reconvenes in 2007.
"We're not giving up," said Bill Dunn, AOPA vice president of airports. "AOPA will continue to work with our Texas members and state leaders to get a new, desperately needed GA airport in Central Texas."
February 2, 2006