Florida is considering establishing a state general aviation caucus and alliance to champion and promote Sunshine State aviators and their businesses after AOPA suggested the idea during the Florida Aviation Business Association’s annual conference in Orlando on June 9.
GA business leaders including AOPA Director of State Government Affairs Jared Esselman, the National Business Aviation Association’s Scott O’Brien, and the Florida Airports Council’s Lisa Waters took questions from Florida Aviation Business Association members eager to support their flying community by promoting aviation’s economic benefit to fellow Floridians.
During the lively question-and-answer period, an attendee asked the panel how to better advance aviation interests across the state.
“One of the things we can do is put together a caucus at the state level,” Esselman responded. “The largest caucus in the U.S. Congress is the General Aviation Caucus, so if it’s that important to the U.S. Congress, it should be that important to the state of Florida,” he said. AOPA has initiated this type of active involvement in states such as Washington, Oregon, and California, which put aviation interests at the forefront of legislative agendas that might affect the nation’s flying community.
Esselman also met with Mike French, president of the Florida Aviation Business Association, to discuss the coalition. Future meetings are planned to help bring the idea to fruition, said Esselman.