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Pilots need to set Delta Air Lines straight

The airlines are continuing their anti-GA propaganda campaign. Delta is the latest to launch an e-mail broadside to its frequent fliers, claiming that the current tax system is unfair to the airlines, and that general aviation is somehow responsible for traffic delays. Here's the truth: Most airline delays are due to the airlines' own scheduling practices and weather. So says the Department of Transportation. General aviation flights are less than 4 percent of the traffic at the nation's 10 busiest airports. Air traffic control modernization (NextGen) will improve things, but it's not a panacea. It can't make thunderstorms disappear, nor allow two airliners to land simultaneously on the same runway. GA is willing to help pay for NextGen and has accepted the fuel tax increases in the House FAA funding bill (H.R.2881) to do so. The airlines demand NextGen and demand a tax decrease. AOPA had originally asked members to e-mail Delta Air Lines CEO Gerald Grinstein, but some e-mails bounced back. You can help set the record straight by e-mailing Delta customer service.

Updated: August 3, 2007, 2:59 p.m. EDT

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