Former alpa chief tapped to be faa administrator
President Obama has nominated Randy Babbitt to become the next Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, a move generally welcomed by industry groups. Babbitt, former president and COO of the Air Line Pilots Association, has 40 years of aviation experience. Last year, U.S. DOT Secretary Mary Peters named Babbitt to the independent review team tasked with evaluating and crafting recommendations to improve FAA’s implementation of the aviation safety system and its culture of safety.
Comments James K. Coyne, president of the National Air Transportation Assn., “There is a lot of good intent on Capitol Hill to approve a long-term [aviation funding] measure, finally. I am hopeful that with Randy filling the Administrator slot, momentum will carry us over the hump towards passage of a bill that modernizes our air traffic control system, rejects user fees, and invests in airport infrastructure.”
Says Chip Barclay, president of the American Assn. of Airport Executives, “AAAE is very pleased that Randy has been chosen to lead FAA.”
Ed Bolen, president of the National Business Aviation Assn., says, “He’s a pilot, with a thorough understanding of how our nation’s aviation system works. He also has a businessperson’s expertise, having started a successful aviation consulting company.”
Boisture to head up hawker beechcraft
Hawker Beechcraft Corporation (HBC) names W.W. (Bill) Boisture Jr., a business aviation veteran, to be its next Chairman/CEO. The former president of NetJets and Gulfstream Aerospace Corp. brings more than 30 years of aviation experience to HBC. He is also a former chairman of Butler Aviation and most recently was the president of Intrepid Aviation, a privately held commercial aircraft lessor. Boisture was a fighter pilot in the U.S. Air Force (USAF) and graduated from the USAF Fighter Weapons School and the U.S. Navy Fighter Weapons School (“Topgun” school). He earned his bachelor’s in engineering management from the U.S. Air Force Academy and his master’s in business administration from the University of New Haven.
Boisture succeeds Jim Schuster, who announced his retirement in November.
History is made: layoffs at duncan
In response to the ailing economy and credit crisis as well as political and media grandstanding against the business aviation industry, Lincoln, NE-based Duncan Aviation announces that it has had to implement a reduction in its nationwide workforce Monday — the first in its 53-year history.
The reduction impacts 304 positions, including 170 at its Lincoln facility; 122 at its Battle Creek and Kalamazoo, MI locations; and 12 in the company’s network of “satellite” avionics and engine locations.
Says chairman Todd Duncan, “The sharp decline in flying by companies that own business aircraft combined with global business closings, reductions in spending, and political grandstanding against our very livelihoods has created an environment that has left us no choice but to downsize.”
ACI-NA Updates Capital Needs Survey
Airports Council International– North America (ACI-NA) reports that the results of its most recent airport capital needs survey indicates that capital development costs for 2009 through 2013, adjusted for inflation, total $94.3 billion — or $18.9 billion annualized. This is an 8.0 percent increase over the 2007 estimate of $87.4 billion, or $17.5 billion annualized, for 2007 through 2011, says ACI-NA.
The D.C.-based trade group recently completed its update of the comprehensive Capital Needs Survey, providing data on capital development costs for some 3,400 airports, ranging from the largest commercial service airports to general aviation airports that comprise the national airport system.
Large hub airports show an increase of 19 percent from $46.5 billion to $55.3 billion. Significant development was identified by Chicago O’Hare, New York JFK and Newark Liberty, Boston Logan, and Miami. Medium and small hubs saw the largest decreases of capital investment by more than 22 percent and 8 percent, respectively, among all airport hub categories. As a result of cuts in airline service, these airports have had to defer some of capital projects previously planned, says ACI-NA.
ACI-NA declares that the survey data clearly demonstrate the need for an increase in the passenger facility charge user fee to at least $7.50, with indexing for construction cost inflation, as well as additional AIP funding.
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