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September 26, 2011     null     Volume 10 Issue 39
Topics in this Volume


nullNATA Joins Industry Letter To House And Senate Leadership Opposing User Fee

NATA joined twenty-six other aviation industry groups in signing letters to both U.S. House of Representatives Speaker John Boehner (R-OH) and U.S. Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-NV) opposing the $100-per-flight user fee as part of the Obama administration’s deficit reduction proposal. The letter urges that Congress reject any taxes or fees that could devastate the aviation industry, a significant contributor to our economy, and that could undermine an already fragile economic recovery.

The letter encourages Congress to “focus on increasing U.S. international competitiveness rather than viewing the industry as a national piggybank,” and states, “Furthermore, we need to increase jobs while ensuring that tax and infrastructure policy are strengthening U.S. aviation and furthering the safety and modernization of the aviation system.”

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nullInside Washington Blog

NATA Vice President of Government and Industry Affairs Eric R. Byer’s latest blog focuses on President Obama’s campaign for change.

To read Byer’s blog, please click here.

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nullCalifornia Governor Signs Flight Training Relief Bill

Last week, California Governor Jerry Brown signed Senate Bill 619 (SB 619) into law, completing an almost two-year-long battle to ensure that rules issued by the California Bureau of Private Post Secondary Education (BPPE) did not destroy the flight training industry in the state. Presented to the Governor as an urgency bill, SB 619 became law as soon as it was signed. The new law exempts from regulation by the BPPE all flight training providers and programs that do not require upfront payment of fees in excess of $2500 and that do not require students to enter into a contract of indebtedness.

The battle for relief for flight training began in early 2010 when the State of California passed Assembly Bill 48 (AB 48) and reauthorized the BPPE. The reauthorization removed previous language that had exempted flight schools from regulation and for the first time subjected flight training providers to rules that were designed for typical “brick and mortar” private colleges and vocational schools. These rules, according to an NATA industry survey, threatened to cause closure of up to 90 percent of California’s flight schools. The burden that the new rules imposed upon flight training providers was directly attributable to the fact that the legislature never included the industry in the discussion and debate over AB 48.

NATA began working to find a solution that would allow the industry to continue to operate. Due to the compliance time frame contained within AB 48, there was not enough time to pass a long term solution before the rules took effect. Rather, NATA worked to get a one-year delay in compliance passed by the legislature. Passed in September 2010, the delay in compliance allowed enough time to engage the legislature and develop a permanent solution.

SB 619 was introduced by State Senator Jean Fuller, an active general aviation pilot, in 2011 to provide an exemption for the vast majority of flight training providers that do require upfront payment of fees from students. NATA worked closely with the Senator’s staff in crafting SB 619 and moving it through the legislature. SB 619 received bipartisan support from the legislature and significant support from industry groups including the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association.

Regarding the signing of SB 619, NATA President and CEO James K. Coyne said, “While we wish this long process could have been avoided in the first place through inclusion of flight training providers in the legislative process, today’s signing of SB 619 speaks volumes about the power of our industry when we all stand up and work together.”

State Senator Fuller noted, “[The] signing of this bill marks the end of a long battle to ensure that California flight training remains a vibrant contributor to our state economy. I am proud to have worked alongside NATA and many others in the flight training industry in passing this legislation.”

Click here to read the NATA Press Release on SB 619.

To learn more about NATA’s efforts on this important initiative, please click here.

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nullSmoking Ban May Impact Charter Operators

The Department of Transportation recently proposed to ban the use of so-called e-cigarettes on all aircraft in scheduled transportation. The proposal also seeks comment on whether the ban on cigarette smoking should be extended to charter aircraft with 19 or more passenger seats.

Currently all charter aircraft, including Part 135 operations, can permit smoking on board the aircraft. The department states that it is considering a ban on “smoking on charter flights with 19 or more passenger seats in part out of concern about the health effect of second hand smoke on flight attendants aboard such flights.” A ban on smoking on aircraft with fewer passenger seats is not under consideration.

The department is requesting comments from all interested parties on whether the smoking ban (including the ban on e-cigarettes) should be expanded. Comments should be submitted on or before November 14, 2011.

Click here to review the complete NPRM, which includes information on how to submit comments.

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nullHouse Approves Extension Of Funding For The Federal Budget

The federal government’s fiscal year (FY) ends on September 30th, and Congress is working to reach an agreement on a continuing resolution (CR) that will fund all programs under FY 2011 levels until a final appropriations bill is enacted. In addition, the CR provides funding for disaster recovery and relief. The U.S. House of Representatives approved the CR last Thursday evening and the U.S. Senate is now considering this legislation.

The bill also applies a 1.503 percent across-the-board reduction to all programs within the federal budget through November 18, 2011. This means the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) would be reduced by $464,000 through the duration of the CR.

The U.S. House of Representatives Committee on Appropriations has approved 11 of the 12 annual Appropriations bills, of which six have passed the House. Last week, the U.S. Senate Committee on Appropriations approved their FY 2012 appropriations bill for the Departments of Transportation and Housing and Urban Development. The Senate bill differs from that of the House version, which was passed earlier this month, by including $143 million for essential air service subsidies in the Office of the Secretary of Transportation. The difference in funding levels between the House and Senate bills are minimal except for AIP funds. The Senate bill includes an overall amount of $3.515 billion for AIP, while the House bill provides $3.35 billion. This funding difference and others will have to be worked out during conference negotiations.

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nullNATA Flight Training Committee Meets In Conjunction With AOPA Summit

NATA’s Flight Training Committee met last week in conjunction with the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association Aviation Summit in Hartford, Connecticut. The committee’s focus for the regular business meeting was the development of detailed goals and objectives for 2012. Increasing NATA member participation in the committee was designated as a priority for the upcoming year.

The purpose of the Flight Training Committee is to assist member flight-training organizations in improving their operations in five areas: safety and security, customer satisfaction, competitiveness, quality of training, viability and profitability. The committee also monitors regulatory issues, influences regulatory changes and engages in defining the future of flight training. Membership in the committee is open to any NATA member company that performs, supports or has an active interest in flight training.

Click here for more information on the NATA Flight Training Committee.

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nullNATA Safety 1st Updated Online Module – De/Anti-icing

Winter weather training programs like NATA’s Safety 1st De/Anti-Icing module are designed to familiarize your line service specialists with the responsibilities of their job and give an overview of the skills necessary for safe aircraft departures. The De/Anti-icing training module was first released in 2010 and viewed by nearly 120 students in preparation for the icy season. NATA Safety 1st recently rolled out updates for the season. If you are not familiar with the online module, click here for an information sheet with screen captures that will give you an idea of what the training looks like and what is covered. To see a demonstration video of the training, please click here.

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nullCheck Out NATA’s Archived E-learn Webinars
Special Offers Available On Some Titles

NATA E-learn webinars are recorded and available for purchase. A link to the recording as well as a pdf of accompanying presentation slides will be provided once your order has been processed. The following webinar titles are now available for purchase in the store. NATA is running a special offer on the Fuel QC recorded webinars, purchase the Refueling and Quality Control Procedures for Airport Service and Support Operations manual and receive all four of the recorded QC webinars for FREE. Visit the NATA store to purchase the manual and you will receive a link to the recorded webinars by email.

  • Social Media Strategies: Tools & Tactics for Success
  • PLST Online Best Practices For Trainers/Administrators
  • Hiring & Screening In Today's Market
  • New or Amended Minimum Standards
  • Success with Social Media
  • Strategies for Negotiating with Airport Authorities
  • Spill Prevention Control and Countermeasures
  • FET Overview for Air Charter Operators
  • Commercial Operators Tax Webinar
  • QC1 Fuel Receipt Procedures And Record Keeping Webinar
  • 2011 QC2 If You Didn't Write It Down, Did You Actually Do It Webinar
  • 2011 QC3 The Straight Scoop On Additives Webinar
  • 2011 QC4 An Aircraft Operator's View Of Fuel QC Webinar
  • NATA/USAIG Workers Comp - Back Strain Webinar
  • 2011 SPCC Compliance Webinar

Most E-learn webinars are $49.95, but a few are available free of charge. Visit for more information on the archived webinars and to place an order today.

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    Upcoming Events

11/07/2011 - Atlanta, GA
Line Service Supervisor Training

11/08/2011 - Atlanta, GA
FBO Success Seminar

03/05/2012 - Las Vegas, NV
2012 Spring Training

NATA E-Learn Webinars

Fuel Quality Control Webinar Series - Special package discounts are available.

Click here to view all archived webinar recordings.

Safety 1st

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The Pilot's Toolkit

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Founded in 1940, NATA aggressively promotes safety and the success of aviation service businesses through its advocacy efforts before government, the media and the public as well as by providing valuable programs and forums to further its members' prosperity.

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