The Nevada State Senate has scaled back a resolution which originally called for Congressional action authorizing the Clark County Department of Aviation to usurp federal authority over local airspace. The current version calls for the formation of a “stakeholders group” to “enhance overall flight safety in the area.”
The resolution came about owing to complaints from airport neighbors insisting that homebuilt aircraft belonging to members of the EAA chapter based there are unsafe. The original resolution caused a significant outcry from aviation groups in the area, causing the State Senate to re-think its wording.
The current resolution specifically requires that representatives from the FAA, Clark County Department of Aviation, Clark County Aviation Association (CCAA), City of North Las Vegas, Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, tenants of the North Las Vegas Airport, and residents of neighborhoods surrounding the airport convene prior to June 1. “The EAA Chapter based at the North Las Vegas Airport and the CCAA will be part of the stakeholders group,” said Dave Edwards, chapter member and director-at-large of CCAA. “Through this group we plan on providing additional educational opportunities to the residents of surrounding neighborhoods, local business entities, and our local and state legislators.”
The resolution’s timeline includes issuance of the group’s preliminary analysis of concerns about flight safety at the airport by August 1; and development of recommendations to improve flight safety standards, “particularly with respect to experimental homebuilt aircraft” on or before November 1, which will be submitted to the “appropriate entities for consideration and to the legislative commission.”
“As an EAA member and pilot I am strongly in favor of the revisions to this resolution,” said Greg Arehart, a member of EAA chapter 1361 who spoke at the public hearing. “My only concern is that experimental aircraft not be singled out. They are no different from other general aviation aircraft.”
EAA maintains that the national airspace system has to be regulated by a single authority, which is the FAA.