In a special report in AOPA’s Aviation eBrief, AOPA President Craig Fuller urges general aviation pilots to get involved in this year’s elections, saying “With a presidential election on the horizon, this is a big year for every American, but perhaps even more so for members of the general aviation community.”
The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association reports that membership in the House General Aviation Caucus leaped to 169 in December, representing more than a third of the House. Lawmakers in both houses are joining the Congressional GA Caucuses to better understand GA and its importance to the national economy and to educate their colleagues; the Senate GA Caucus has grown to 36 members. Is your senator or representative a member of the caucus?
The AOPA Foundation’s Air Safety Institute has released a new interactive online course called “Aging Gracefully, Flying Safely.”
In the spirit of the aviation mnemonic that uses “the five Ts” to remember what comes next on an instrument approach, a report at AOPA.org noted that taxes, technology, training, tetraethyl lead, and tracking of aircraft by Internet users highlighted a checklist of issues facing general aviation in 2011. Check it out here.
Citing challenges facing general aviation, Craig Fuller, president of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, unveiled Monday a $1.5 million advertising and promotion campaign to gain public support to keep government from imposing devastating user fees, airport limitations, and other restrictions on air transportation that serves America.
The program includes radio, television, on-line and print ads featuring how people and businesses use personal aircraft and the services this use gives to the nation. Actor and long-time pilot Harrison Ford, an AOPA member, is volunteering to help tell the story of general aviation. Advertisements include personal reports of how general aviation contributes more than $150 billion into the U.S. economy each year and what this means for local communities, businesses, medical and law enforcement, and other activities.
“General aviation is facing acute challenges from many directions,” Fuller said at a press conference, “which could cause much, if not all, of that economic activity to dry up.”
Challenges include President Obama’s budget plan to impose hefty user fees on flights and concerns over possible airport and airspace restricts.
Through the telling of how “General Aviation Serves America” AOPA hopes to gain a better public understanding of personal and business flight and get more grass roots help for the association’s work with Congress, the FAA, Homeland Security, and other federal and state officials.
The program is just the beginning, Fuller said, of a continuing effort which probably will cover several years before the public fully understands how general aviation serves and must be permitted to continue its valuable work for the nation.
For more information: AOPA.org
Melissa Rudinger has been named vice president and assistant to Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association President Craig Fuller.
Rudinger has worked for AOPA for more than 18 years, spending most of that time in the Government Affairs Division, where she was most recently the vice president of regulatory affairs, overseeing a staff that dealt with issues covering everything from aircraft certification to airspace issues to pilot certification.