The aviation department at Fort Lauderdale-Hollywood International wants to impose on general aviation the same landing fee it charges the commercial planes - because, according to the airport, GA doesn't pay its fair share. AOPA contends that pilots should continue support to airport operations through the airport's fuel flowage fee and other charges not paid by commercial aircraft. The department proposes to charge 97 cents per 1,000 pounds of nominal gross landing weight for each GA landing, with a minimum fee of $10 - that's the same amount it currently charges the airlines. "This minimum fee is especially objectionable," said AOPA's Florida Regional Representative Nelson Rhodes. "Take a Cessna 172, for example. With this $10 minimum, the pilot would have to pay four times what he would at 97 cents per thousand. That's paying too much. The fuel flowage fee adequately covers the cost for GA to operate at the airport." Under the current proposal, based GA aircraft would not be exempt from the landing fee. Airports typically grant an exemption from landing fees to aircraft based at an airport because they usually pay tiedown or hangar fees, fuel flowage fees, and other charges. A public hearing about this proposal will take place during the Broward County Commission meeting at 2 p.m. on Tuesday, January 23, at the Broward County Governmental Center in Room 422. Rhodes will be on hand to testify against the proposal. AOPA members are encouraged to attend and voice their opposition.
January 12, 2007