Industry News

NBAA: ‘TSA’s proposal would overwhelm’
National Business Aviation Association president and CEO Ed Bolen is campaigning about “the potentially ruinous effect” that the Transportation Security Administration’s proposed Large Aircraft Security Program (LASP) could have on small and mid-size businesses and on the general aviation (GA) community as a whole. Charges Bolen, “The TSA’s proposal would overwhelm businesses, airports, and others across the general aviation community, at a time when it is beset with challenges in the current marketplace. Equally unfortunate, the burden the proposal would produce would not result in a clear security benefit.”
Bolen relayed his comments to TSA at the agency’s fourth hearing on this proposal, which would impose new security requirements on all general aviation aircraft weighing 12,500 lbs. or more. Airports serving those aircraft would also be subject to provisions in the TSA proposal.
Business aviation groups across the board oppose the TSA proposed regs.

Airport groups seek stimulus funds
Both Airports Council International-North America and the American Association of Airport Executives testified to the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee on the need to direct economic stimulus funding to airport capital improvement projects.
John Clark, ACI-NA chair and director of Jacksonville Int’l, urges Congress to inject some $3 billion into such projects. He related to the committee that airports get most of the funding for capital projects from the issuance of bonds; however, turmoil in the credit markets has made issuing bonds difficult for airports. “That is why AIP funds are so important,” Clark says. “Airports have over $3 billion in AIP-approved projects that are ready to go in the next two years. Guaranteed funding from the federal government through the AIP program will ensure shovels in the ground at airports both large and small across the country in as little as 30 to 45 days after the enactment of ... legislation.”

Sale of eclipse assets approved
Eclipse Aviation will soon begin a new life as EclipseJet Aviation International, after a judge in U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Delaware in late January verbally approved the sale of Eclipse’s assets, including its manufacturing facilities with some 900 employees in Albuquerque, to Luxemburg-based ETIRC Aviation. The sale was outlined in Eclipse’s bankruptcy plan when it filed for a Chapter 11 business reorganization on Nov. 25. Reports put the purchase price at $28 million cash, plus another $160 million in promissory notes.

Briefings ...

air chef holdings, llc. — headquartered in Tampa announces the separation of its services into two distinct service offerings, Air Culinaire and CaterLink. Air Culinaire will continue to be the brand name of owned and operated kitchens in 14 locations.

altovoo.com — is launched by international business veteran Barbara Abello, providing the first online aircraft market & industry directory dedicated to Brazilian general aviation.

asa — of Newscastle, WA introduces the newest addition to The Pilot’s Manual Series, The Pilot’s Manual: Access to Flight, with an innovative curriculum that combines the Private Pilot and Instrument Rating curriculums into a single flight training program; www.asa.com.

aspen avionics — of Albuquerque announces that the European Aviation Safety Agency has issued European Technical Standard Order authorizations for the EFD1000 Primary Flight Displays, paving the way for installation of the units in European aircraft and for expansion of Aspen’s European dealer network.

business jet access — at Dallas Love Field adds a King Air 350 to its FAR Part 135 Air Carrier Certificate; BJA has a total of seven aircraft on its certificate including a BAC 1-11, two Citation VIIs, and a Gulfstream III, Hawker 850XP, Challenger 300, and King Air 350.

canadian airports council — based in Ottawa will host the Airports Canada 2009 Conference and Exhibition in Ottawa-Gatineau April 28-30, 2009; www.canadasairports.com.

cessna aircraft co. — a Textron Inc. (NYSE: TXT) company based in Wichita, introduced the 350 Corvalis and 400 Corvalis TT during this year’s annual sales meeting in Wichita. The Cessna 350 Corvalis and 400 Corvalis TT (twin turbocharged), formerly the Cessna 350 and Cessna 400 respectively, have been renamed as part of Cessna’s acquisition of certain assets from Columbia Aircraft Manufacturing Company in 2007. The move follows recent announcements of layoffs by Cessna as it retrenches during the economic downturn.

charlotte/douglas int’l airport — is working on a plan to add an urgent-care clinic to its main terminal this summer and is seeking proposals from medical providers to operate the clinic.

chicago rockford int’l airport — announces that the first phase of the new Int’l Cargo Center is completed.

city of chicago — prepares to pay United Airlines $163 million to relocate a cargo facility that lies in the path of the next runway planned for O’Hare Int’l Airport. United and FedEx Corp. previously agreed to demolish buildings along the airport’s southern periphery that lie in the planned path for Runway 10/28 Center, the next project in the city’s $15 billion effort to modernize delay-prone O’Hare.

dallas love field— begins a $519 million improvement program that includes a revitalized terminal with a new 20-gate concourse.

delta air lines inc. — challenges Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta Int’l Airport over operating costs and lease negotiations, contesting the rising cost of capital improvement projects such as the $1.6 billion Maynard Holbrook Jackson Int’l Terminal, which is now projected to cost double original estimates and what it says will be a doubling of its unit costs by 2016. Delta and other carriers at Hartsfield-Jackson operate under a 30-year lease, which expires in 2010.

dfw int’l airport — opens the first quadrant of its state-of-the-art perimeter taxiway, a revolutionary aviation concept designed and implemented in partnership with FAA that will eliminate hundreds of aircraft crossings a day, where as many as 1,500 runway crossings occur daily. The first quadrant of the perimeter taxiway system cost $67 million, with 75 percent of the funding coming from FAA.

duncan aviation — at Lincoln, NE adds Atlanta to its list of more than 20 satellite avionics facilities. This new Duncan Aviation satellite is located with Hill Aircraft and Leasing at Atlanta Fulton County Airport.

gao — Government Accounting Office removes FAA’s NextGen ATC modernization program from its 2009 High-Risk List because of FAA’s progress in addressing most of the root causes of past problems and the agency’s commitment to sustaining progress. FAA’s efforts have yielded results, including deploying new systems across the country and incurring fewer cost overruns, says GAO, which added FAA air traffic control modernization to the High-Risk List in 1995; www.gao.gov.

hawker beechcraft corp. — expands its global customer service and support capability with the opening of a new paint facility at its factory-owned service center at the Hawarden Airport in Chester, U.K.

hannay reels — of Westerlo, NY offers its updated full-color catalog featuring information on its complete line of aviation hose reels; http://go.hannay.com.

indiana seaplane pilots assn. — supports a proposal to increase public access to Indiana lakes for seaplanes. Since 1998, ISPA has worked with the state to establish a network of 17 Indiana lakes with private-use seaplane landing areas.

jet aviation — based in Zurich, restructures its U.S. executive management, reporting that Jim Ziegler, who had been chief operating officer of U.S. operations, is leaving the company and will become an advisor to Jet Aviation. Gary Dempsey, Jet Aviation’s president of Flight Services for The Americas, and Kurt Sutterer, president, MRO & Completions of Midcoast Aviation, an affiliate of the Jet Aviation Group, will be responsible for U.S. operations.

kelowna int’l airport — in British Columbia extends its runway from 7300 feet to 8900 feet; increases vehicle parking and improves roadway access to the terminal; and expands food and beverage services with the addition of the WhiteSpot Restaurant, Tim Hortons, and the wine store relocated into the departure room. YLW was chosen in 2008 by Canadian Air Transport Security Authority (CATSA) as the host site for a pilot project on an integrated checkpoint, making it a world’s first (in an airport) by integrating one machine using millimeter wave technology with current technology (X-ray and metal detection).

lexington (ky) blue Grass Airport — reports the resignation of executive director Michael A. Gobb and others amid ongoing investigations concerning their spending of airport money.

massport — Massachusetts Port Authority plans to cut $17 million, or 4.5 percent, from its budget following a 16 percent drop in commercial traffic compared with November 2007.

nbaa — National Business Aviation Assn. welcomes the decision by Congress to strike language from the Troubled Assets Relief Program (TARP) first passed by Congress last year, which would have required companies receiving TARP funds to divest of business aircraft.

nbta — National Business Travel Assn. joins ten other organizations from the commercial and general aviation community in submitting a letter to Congress requesting stimulus funding to jump-start NextGen, FAA’s plan to update the ground-based air traffic system, with a call to advance the schedule originally set to achieve investment return in 2025. The letter requests $4 billion of the $20 billion in required equipage costs to accelerate the program and its benefits.

nfpa — National Fire Protection Association, which develops building fire codes including requirements for aircraft hangars, proposes new technical changes that will affect aircraft hangar owners, reports NATA. For general aviation, NFPA 409 provides fire codes for all aircraft hangars in most jurisdictions throughout the U.S. NATA charges that NFPA 409 is incredibly complicated and is interpreted differently throughout the country, and that new technical changes will only add additional cost for small businesses; www.nata.aero.

odyssey aviation — reports that seven locations are launching under the Odyssey brand name through the formation of a co-branding partnership between Odyssey Aviation in Nassau, Bahamas, and the Cincinnati-based FBO group owned by Ken Allison. Allison’s seven Odyssey-branded FBOs, formerly operating as members of the Million Air FBO chain, are located at Asheville, N.C.; Charleston, S.C; Chicago Midway, Cincinnati Lunken; Columbus, OH; Lafayette, LA; and New Orleans Lakefront.

port authority of NY&NJ — plans to install bird-detecting radar at its three major airports following the emergency landing of a US Airways commercial jetliner in the Hudson River in January.

ray lahood — is approved by Congress as the next Secretary of Transportation, succeeding Mary Peters. LaHood signals that his first priorities include naming an administrator to run FAA, moving to settle a long-running labor dispute between the FAA and its 15,000 air-traffic controllers; and, rejecting the Bush Administration’s calls for slot auctions at New York’s commercial airports.

san jose int’l airport — faced with dramatic monthly drops in passenger traffic and in midst of a $1.35 billion modernization project reports significant budget cuts. In addition to deferring some maintenance and capital projects, refinancing debt, and increasing revenue from new concessions, officials are eliminating more than 100 jobs in the next 18 months to close a budget gap projected to be $35 million in 2010.

southwest airlines — notifies Nashville Int’l Airport that effective March 8 through May 8, 2009, Southwest is adding one additional flight each to five markets it currently serves from BNA, and beginning May 9 through June 26, 2009, is adding back nonstop service to Oakland and Seattle plus an additional flight each to four other markets.

sterling aviation — a business aircraft management and charter company headquartered at Milwaukee’s Mitchell Int’l Airport with a second full-service base under development at Naples, FL, adds a Citation Sovereign to its fleet.

tac air — a division of Truman Arnold Companies, begins services at its newest location at Spirit of St. Louis Airport in Chesterfield, MO, following the purchase of the assets of JetDirect, bringing the FBO chain’s total locations to 13.

tunica air group, llc — adds pitot-static system maintenance, altimeter and transponder certification, and testing and servicing of NiCad and lead acid batteries at its Tunica, MS and Memphis, TN repair station locations. www.tunicaairgroup.com.

FBO Snapshot

Upgrade at Million Air Dallas
Million Air Dallas, which celebrates its 25th year in 2009, completes a $2 million renovation of its fixed base operation at the Addison Airport. Amenities include restrooms of granite and marble, exotic wood paneling, a remodeled front desk, along with a movie theatre, on-site workout facility, and updated conference rooms. The FBO recently added a Gulfstream G450 and Embraer Legacy to its fleet of bizjets available for charter/sales.

In Memoriam: John H. Winant

Former National Business Aviation Association president John H. Winant died January 13 at his home in Williamstown, MA at age 85 of natural causes.

Winant was first elected to NBAA’s board of directors in 1957, when he was vice president of the Sprague Electric Co., and was appointed as NBAA’s first full-time staff president in 1971, serving in that capacity through his retirement in 1986 when the NBAA board gave him the title of president emeritus. During Winant’s term, NBAA grew from 824 member companies to almost 3000; in 1981, he led an effort to bring business aviation associations from around the world to form the International Business Aviation Council.

Among his many awards: FAA’s Distinguished Service Award, PATCO’s President’s Award, Flight Safety Foundation’s Meritorious Service Award, and National Aeronautical Association’s Elder Statesman Award. In 1977, Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University awarded Winant the Gill Robb Wilson Award and later conferred on him the honorary degree of doctor of aviation management.

Expo Returns to Vegas – March 10-12

Aviation Industry Expo, the annual event that brings together ground support, FBO/aviation services, and aircraft maintenance companies and personnel, returns to Las Vegas March 10-12.

New to this year’s event will be the Green Pavilion, which will offer attendees a showcase of green products and services to help make environmentally friendly business decisions.

“The Green Pavilion is the answer to an ever-growing need of our attendees,” says show manager Lynnette Sjoquist. “As companies continue to go green, it is important for us to offer a showcase of green products and services that will not only help companies meet compliance regulations, but also demonstrate cost-effective practices.”

Educational sessions include AMTSociety’s IA renewal; FOD management; line safety/refueling; RFID; deicing; and more. For information, visit www.AviationIndustryExpo.com.

Expo is held in conjunction with a series of seminars hosted by the National Air Transportation Association, including its long-running Line Service Supervisor Training Course; visit www.nata.aero.

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