January 2008

GREETINGS! First, Here's an update from Washington, D. C. With no FAA reauthorization legislation finalized as of this writing, EAA, AOPA, and other groups, is continuing to urge the U. S. Senate to pass a reauthorization bill, one that does not contain user fees imposed on general aviation. Therefore, the measure can advance to a congressional conference committee for a final agreement.

"We continue our support of the language contained in House Bill HR 2881, which maintains a viable funding plan for FAA's operations and modernization plans that includes the current Aviation Trust Fund," said Doug Macnair, EAA vice president of government relations. "Operating under a series of continuing resolutions is better than imposing GA user fees or other draconian financial burdens, but it is not the way anyone wants the nation's aviation agency to operate."

EAA and other General Aviation Organizations stand united against the use of user fees as a viable and practical way to fund the FAA's current needs and modernization proposals. More background on user fees is available at

Secondly, The National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) wants nothing to do with a quiet offer from FAA Acting Administrator Bobby Sturgell to raise the pay of some members and offer other incentives to "settle" ongoing labor strife. The proposed deal was outlined in a memo to FAA managers on Monday January 1, 2008. The FAA has declined detailed comment on the offer but NATCA President Pat Forrey dismissed it as "a desperate attempt by the FAA to try and stem the alarming rate of controller retirements and total attrition" he says is directly attributable to the contract imposed on the controllers in 2006. He said that until controllers have a negotiated contract, the current exodus of senior controllers is expected to continue. Pat Forrey also went over Sturgell's head to Secretary of Transportation Mary Peters last week with a letter that expressed the same sentiments. He also asked her to impose flight restrictions at some of the country's busiest airports if there is no hope of the government returning to the bargaining table.

Thirdly, Government Accountability Office (GAO) releases a report showing that a range of severe problems, from woefully inadequate staffing and insufficient training to low morale that drives high attrition rates, is seriously impacting the ability of the Bureau of Customs and Border Protection to carry out its critical border security mission;

Fourthly, Here's an update concerning Missouri Aviation. The only Airport and Aviation Bills are as follows:

Missouri House of Representatives
94th General Assembly, 2nd Regular Session (2008)
Bills Indexed by Subject

HB 1495 --- Sponsor: Bruns, Mark J. --- CoSponsor: Sater, David
Changes the laws regarding the Aviation Trust Fund and the funding for certain air traffic control towers

Note: Here's your web site address for Texas Legislation:
Look for Transportation-Aviation, to search all Aviation Bills.

Note: Here's your web site address for Illinois Legislation:
Look for Transportation-Aviation, to search all Aviation Bills.

Now, In Conclusion, Remember, we as USPA, MPA, EAA, AOPA, or any other State Pilot Associations of which you may be a member, all have a powerful voice, be it here in Missouri, Indiana, Texas, or whatever state you may represent. Every group of pilots and taxpayers carries a strong voice to Washington, D.C., and on the State and Local Level.

So Let's not forget to exercise our privileges, and continue to make a "Difference for General Aviation."


Larry G. Harmon
Legislation Chairman
E-mail address:

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