The “Community Airport Access and Protection Act of 2010” was introduced March 11 to Congress by the Sam Graves (R-Mo.) and Leonard Boswell (D-Iowa) to correct the FAA’s recent policy to prohibit “through the fence” access at any airport receiving Airport Improvement Grant funds. Senator James Inhofe (R-Okla.) has introduced a similar bill on the Senate side.
The FAA prohibited “through the fence” (TTF) access in its Airport Compliance Manual Order 5190.6b, which was released last September without any public or alphabet group input. In addition, a Freedom of Information Act request made by the group ThroughTheFence.org revealed that no data, studies, or non-FAA personnel’s opinions went into the new order, according to Brent Blue, ThroughTheFence.org‘s founder.
The recently introduced bills allow off-airport through the fence access and prevents the FAA from considering an airport to be in violation of its grant assurances because of such access agreements. The legislation requires off-airport users to pay access charges similar to airport tenants and maintain their properties compatible with safe airport functions.
“Congressmen Graves and Boswell, as well as Senator Inhofe, deserve tremendous credit for sponsoring legislation that ensures access to general aviation airports and supports their economic vitality through TTF fees,” Blue said. “This correction of FAA policy will help maintain the viability of small airports by encourage use while supporting safety and security.”
ThroughTheFence.org is encouraging all pilots and others interested in general aviation to contact their senators and representatives to support this important legislation for airports.
For more information: ThroughTheFence.org