The webinar presentation, conducted on Tuesday, February 21, states, "NATA is pleased that Congress was able to reach agreement on a number of differences, enabling a final agreement on legislation to reauthorize the FAA."
Public Law 112-95 (H.R. 658) contains several provistions sponsored by the association including consistency of regulatory interpretations and the study of Part 135 operations.
Comments National Air Transportation Association (NATA) VP Eric Byer, "One of the biggest issues that we have had is dealing with regulatory consistency. One of the things we see at the local level are FSDOs that repeatedly have differing interpretations on a variety of different rules and regulations.
"Another area we continue to struggle with FAA on is the administration having a better idea about the scope and magnitude of a Part 135 fleet. There has only been one Part 135 study done that we are aware of, and that was through language that we included in FAA Reauthorization some ten years ago; we are hoping that this report will be done on an at least every-other-year basis."
Of the provisions the association objects, says Byer, "Obviously first and foremost, the ban on Stage II aircraft; it will be phased out through December 31, 2015. All aircraft will have to migrate over to a Stage III noise level compliance."
Additional objections include: repeal of a fuel fraud tax provision contained in the 2005 Highway Bill was not included in the final conference bill; and the bill allows general aviation airport sponsors to enter into a residential through-the-fence (RTTF) agreement without being in violation of federal grant assurances as long as the agreement meets specific conditions.
States the association, "NATA remains concerned with the provision allowing residential through-the-fence agreements at public-use airports. Not only does the provision threaten the federal investment in our nation’s public-use airports, it also jeopardizes the businesses at those airports."
Byer relates that overall, NATA is quite happy with the bill. "We are glad we finally have one after four years of extensions," he adds.
On another note completely, AviationPros.com and Airport Business Magazine are launching a new blog today — 'Airport Talk'. The Airport Talk blog will be written weekly by yours truly.