AOPA is asking the FAA to comply with the intent of President Barack Obama’s orders and re-examine its justification for making the Washington, D.C., Air Defense Identification Zone (ADIZ) permanent. The president told all federal agencies to stop and review all regulations issued by the previous administration, but not yet implemented.
In a Jan. 28 letter to Acting FAA Administrator Lynne Osmus, AOPA Executive Vice President of Government Affairs Andy Cebula wrote, “A significant concern of AOPA members…is that FAA has never provide the public with detailed data that justifies” making the ADIZ permanent.
Last month, the FAA issued a regulation changing the ADIZ from a “temporary” flight restriction area to a permanent special flight rules area (SFRA). The change becomes effective Feb 17.
But Cebula reminded the FAA that the president’s intent was clear: Agencies should review any impending regulation to ensure that “interested parties had the benefit of access to the facts, data, or other analyses on which the agency relied upon” to justify the rule.
“The final rule that makes permanent the existing ‘temporary’ restrictions was highly controversial and drew tremendous opposition through 22,000 comments and from witnesses at four public meetings,” Cebula said. Delaying the implementation of the SFRA and “reopening the comment period would provide the opportunity for the government to consider alternatives with the aviation community that could maintain adequate levels of security in the region, without the harmful economic impact levied by the current and pending restrictions.
“Your review of the rule could allow the first real dialogue with the impacted community and lead to a better alternative.”