June 3, 2004 - The head of the Senate Select Committee on Intelligence, Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.), is every bit as anxious to see the FAA's report on the continuing need for the air defense identification zone (ADIZ) around Baltimore and Washington, D.C., as AOPA is. In a letter to FAA Administrator Marion Blakey, Roberts said, "General aviation is an important industry in my state and I have heard from numerous Kansas pilots on this issue." Kansas is home to Cessna, Raytheon, and Bombardier's Learjet division.
The FAA reauthorization bill signed into law in mid-December of last year required the agency to report to Congress within 30 days of enactment on the continuing need for the ADIZ and on efforts to improve operational efficiency. Nearly five months have passed since the deadline expired. "The FAA owes it to GA pilots and air traffic controllers overburdened by the ADIZ requirements to explain its rationale," said AOPA President Phil Boyer. "More importantly, the agency is ignoring the will of Congress."