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December 29, 2017, issue of 'AOPA ePilot' weekly newsletterDecember 29, 2017, issue of 'AOPA ePilot' weekly newsletter

VOL 19, ISSUE 52 December 29, 2017
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Top Stories
Breakthrough year for BasicMed
May 1, 2017, probably doesn't carry much significance for the average person, but for more than 25,000 pilots, that date was a game changer. May 1 marked the implementation of BasicMed, or the biggest shift in aeromedical qualification for general aviation pilots since the 1960s. Read more >
Opponents continue fending off ATC 'privatization'
Call it the gift for special interests that didn't show up for the holidays. As 2017 headed for the history books, the airlines and their supporters were still waiting for a present they had hoped to receive: Control over the U.S. air traffic control system. Whether that package is lost in the mail for good remains unclear. Read more >
Photographers' choice: Best pictures of 2017
AOPA's photographers bring the action and glamour of aviation to pilots through the association's magazines, online publications, and social media channels. They give their all to get the best photo, and have picked their favorites from 2017 for you to enjoy. Read more >
Technique and Safety
Top 10 safety programs
From podcasts and quizzes to videos and courses, which AOPA Air Safety Institute safety programs released in 2017 made it to the top 10? Review the list >
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Give your airplane some TLC
If you're not an authorized mechanic, what preventive maintenance can you perform on your aircraft? For example, are you allowed to replace the side window? The AOPA Air Safety Institute's "Preventive Maintenance" quiz can help you put some life back in your aircraft. Take the quiz >
Emergency in IMC? Speak up
During an emergency in instrument meteorological conditions, an air traffic controller may be able to guide you to an airport or suitable landing spot. Learn more in this video, excerpted from the AOPA Air Safety Institute's IFR Insights: A Practical Approach online course. Watch the video >
Online resource
Tips for transitioning to high-performance aircraft
If earning a high-performance or complex endorsement is one of your New Year's resolutions, find out what training is needed. Read more >
Navigating change in 2017
From improving pilot training and certification to streamlining cross-border flying and opposing difficult-to-detect restricted airspace, AOPA's advocacy team worked hard in 2017 to enhance the utility and safety of general aviation. Read more >
Most-complained-about Illinois airport initiates improvement
Following AOPA's complaint to the FAA about fixed-base operator pricing practices at Illinois' Waukegan National Airport, local leaders have publicized free tiedowns for transient aircraft, marked a pedestrian gate for direct access to the ramp, and lowered self-service avgas prices. Read more >
Drone identification and tracking report released
The FAA on Dec. 19 published a much-anticipated report from the aviation rulemaking committee formed to recommend a systematic approach to identifying drones in flight, enabling law enforcement, air traffic control, and security authorities to instantly identify a drone's owner. Read more >
An eventful year for drones
If it seems like drones are just about everywhere these days, there's something to that. This year saw several significant developments in technology and regulation related to drones. Read more >
Levil brings BOM to market
Levil Aviation has begun work to fill preorders following FAA approval of an external data module that gives any general aviation aircraft a self-powered, wireless source of backup data on position, attitude, and angle of attack, along with traffic and weather information. Read more >
FAA certifies Garmin GDL 82
Garmin announced Dec. 21 that it has received FAA certification for its new GDL 82 Automatic Dependent Surveillance-Broadcast (ADS-B) Out transceiver, the latest addition to the company's line of certified ADS-B solutions. Read more >
Pilot Protection Services
Sales and use tax on aircraft purchases
Sales tax and use tax are effectively the same consumption tax, and aircraft owners should plan on paying one or the other when purchasing an aircraft. Read more >
Member benefit
Top insurance questions of 2017
Find out when it's important to purchase renter's insurance, how obtaining an instrument rating can help lower insurance rates, and what kind of insurance is recommended when borrowing an aircraft. Read more >
News and Notes
Top stories of 2017
Ground-breaking medical reform, new aircraft, and new destinations to explore are some of the stories that captured pilots' attention in 2017. Also, aviation played a major role in helping pilots enjoy a natural phenomenon and respond quickly in the wake of natural disasters. Read more >
Remembering major contributors to aviation
As 2017 closes out, AOPA pauses to honor those who made major contributions to aviation. These pilots who died in 2017 have legacies that will live long in the world of aviation. Read more >
Flight Design resumes deliveries under new ownership
Flight Design, maker of what remains the most popular brand of light sport aircraft in terms of units sold, expects to pick up the pace of new deliveries in 2018 after emerging from receivership. Read more >
Super Cub Sweepstakes
Bare bones
Restoring a 60-plus-year-old Super Cub that's been orphaned by its manufacturer takes a network of general aviation companies. Find out what's going into your AOPA Sweepstakes Super Cub. Read more >
FAA expands drone restrictions over federal facilities
The FAA is expanding the list of sensitive government facilities where unmanned aircraft operations are prohibited: Seven U.S. Department of Energy facilities will be no-drone zones effective Dec. 29. Read more >
Career Opportunities
Aviation job board
Job of the week: Aviation instructor/lecturer, Bowling Green State University
Bowling Green State University in Ohio is seeking a full-time aviation instructor, lecturer, or senior lecturer starting in August 2018. Primary duties include teaching and developing undergraduate courses in aviation safety, airline management and operations, and ground school, as well as serving as safety coordinator for the Flight Technology and Operations specialty. A master's degree in aviation or a related field is required. Read the full description and apply today >
AOPA career opportunities
Join the AOPA team
Ever dream of turning your passion for aviation into a career? AOPA is looking for a medical certification specialist, writer/editorial long-term temp, insurance account executive, High School Aviation Initiative manager, High School Aviation Initiative coordinator, customer service representative, accounting clerk, administrative clerk, legislative affairs vice president, airports and state advocacy vice president, aviation program operations coordinator, and Salesforce developer. Learn about AOPA career opportunities >
Question of the Week

I would like to replace my current checklist, which is a copy of my aircraft's pilot's operating handbook checklist, with something sturdier and simpler to use. Does the FAA have any recommendations about using a commercially available checklist?
Yes. See this Safety Alert for Operators for more information. The FAA cautions pilots to verify the contents of a self-made or commercially available checklist against what the aircraft manufacturer provides before using it. Sometimes the little details make a big difference.

Got a question for our technical services staff? Contact AOPA.
Education & Seminars
Flight Instructor Refresher Courses
Jan 6-7 Charlotte, North Carolina; and Santa Clara, California
Jan 13-14 Portland, Oregon; Costa Mesa, California; Alcoa, Tennessee; and Renton, Washington
Jan 20-21 Jackson, Mississippi; Frederick, Maryland; and Romulus, Michigan
Jan 27-28 San Antonio, Texas
For a complete schedule, see AOPA Online. Can't make it in person? Sign up for the AOPA Air Safety Institute's Online eFIRC.
Safety Seminars
Jan 10 Fairfax, Virginia
Jan 15 Reno, Nevada; and Houston, Texas
Jan 16 Sacramento, California; and Houston, Texas
Jan 17 Milpitas, California; and San Antonio, Texas
Topics vary—for details and a complete schedule, see AOPA Online.
Rusty Pilots Seminars
Jan 13 Stevensville, Maryland
Jan 20 Bartow, Florida; and Fort Worth, Texas
Jan 26 Sebring, Florida
Jan 27 Waco, Texas
AOPA Rusty Pilots Seminars are sponsored by Sporty's. For a complete schedule, visit the AOPA Hangar. (Log in to the AOPA Hangar using your AOPA website username and password to view these events.)
Aviation Calendar
Want something to do this weekend? Planning an aviation getaway? See AOPA's enhanced calendar of events. You can filter events, add an event, or search all events in the calendar. (Log in to the AOPA Hangar using your AOPA website username and password to search the events or to add an event.) Before you take off on an adventure, make sure you check our current aviation weather provided by Jeppesen.
For airport details, including FBO fuel prices, see AOPA Airports. AOPA does not endorse or assume responsibility for the events submitted and listed in the calendar.
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Jim Moore
Dan Namowitz
David Tulis

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Melissa Whitehouse
Mike Collins
Sarah Deener
Dave Hirschman
Tom Horne
Warren Morningstar
Jill W. Tallman
Ian J. Twombly
Julie Summers Walker
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