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 NATA News

##Date##                                                                                                Volume 8 Issue 6

NATA is the National Air Transportation Association 

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.


Upcoming Events


Line Service Supervisor Training – February 17


NATA Safety 1st Management System (SMS) Workshop – March 2, 2009


ACSF Safety Symposium - March 3-4, 2009


NATA Education Week at Aviation Industry Expo - March 9-11, 2009


Professional Line Service Training 

PLST Online provides the most up-to-date training available for line service specialists – 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. Line service supervisors can conduct the new PLST Online training anytime and from anywhere there is access to the Web.   

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139 Fire Safety Training Online


This training not only meets and exceeds the requirements of 14 CFR 139.321 but also allows you to interact with other students in a group learning environment, receive the very latest NFPA news, watch live training presentations and much more.

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Pre-Employment Screening Exam


NATA is offering the first pre-employment screening exam specifically for line service technicians and FBO customer service specialists.

With predecessor exams already in use at more than 900 companies worldwide, NATA has adapted the most cost effective and revealing pre-employment testing and post employment testing available for FBO use.

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Safety 1st


Topics in this Volume:
Ø BCA Editor Highlights Business Aviation Value In Op-Ed To NY Times
Ø EPA Announces SPPC Rule Date Extension
Ø Association Discusses Comment Development Process With NFPA Officials: New NFPA Issue Resource Web Page Developed 
Ø New "Playbook" Security Measures By Local TSA Officials Raises Concerns
Ø Criminal Indictments Issued Against Platinum Jet Principals
Ø NTSB Holds Public Hearing To Review Helicopter EMS Safety
Ø Illegal Charter Hotline Jammed With Calls After Notice Is Sent
Ø Loudoun County, VA Board Of Supervisors Votes Against Property Tax Increase On Aircraft
Ø NetJets Buys Airport Outside Frankfurt
Ø Invite Members Of Congress To Tour Your Facility And Exhibit Virtues Of General Aviation Industry
Ø PAC Contributions Make A Difference In Washington
Ø March Symposium Addresses State Of Safety
Ø Three Major Opportunities To Boost Your Business Success In 2009
Ø NATA Weekly Survey
Ø Aviation's Effect On The Environment - Did You Know?


Aircraft Services Language Included With Executive Compensation Guidelines Announced By President Obama
Last week, President Obama and Treasury Secretary Timothy Geithner announced new guidelines for executive compensation for those companies receiving federal funding from the Troubled Asset Relief Program. Included within these guidelines is language that would require the board of directors from companies receiving federal assistance to "adopt a company-wide policy on any expenditures related to aviation services, office and facility renovations, entertainment and holiday parties, and conferences and events."

The provision highlighting the aviation service language follows:

    Require Board of Directors' Adoption of Company Policy Relating to Approval of Luxury Expenditures: The boards of directors of companies receiving exceptional assistance from the government must adopt a company-wide policy on any expenditures related to aviation services, office and facility renovations, entertainment and holiday parties, and conferences and events. This policy is not intended to cover reasonable expenditures for sales conferences, staff development, reasonable performance incentives and other measures tied to a company's normal business operations. These new rules go beyond current guidelines, and would require certification by chief executive officers for expenditures that could be viewed as excessive or luxury items. Companies should also now post the text of the expenditures policy on their web sites.
NATA continues to advocate to key Obama administration officials and Congress the immense value of the general aviation industry to the American economy and the jobs provided by those small aviation businesses that are the backbone of the aviation industry. The association is expressing deep concern to federal officials and Capitol Hill as to how these policies are crippling the general aviation community, causing financial instability and job losses due primarily to unjustified and misrepresented media scrutiny. This scrutiny continues to move key decisions makers to implement harsh policies affecting the general aviation industry, making it the "scapegoat" for the shortcomings of other business sectors.

To view the complete press release on the new executive compensation guidelines, please click here.

BCA Editor Highlights Business Aviation Value In Op-Ed To NY Times
Business & Commercial Aviation Editor William Garvey submitted an opinion editorial to the NY Times on Saturday, January 31, highlighting the value of business aviation.

To view Garvey's op-ed, please click here.

EPA Announces SPPC Rule Date Extension
On January 29, 2009, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced that it will delay the effective date of the final rule that amends the Spill Prevention, Control, and Countermeasure (SPCC) regulations published in the Federal Register on December 5, 2008. The amendments will now become effective on April 4, 2009. This will allow an additional 60 days for the regulated public to comment on the new regulations and will also allow the new administration to interpret the comments. The White House had issued a memorandum titled "Regulatory Review" that formed the basis of the additional comment period.

The rules published in December 5, 2008, included several items listed below that may affect aviation.

  • A new definition of "facility."
  • A new definition of "loading/unloading racks."
  • A new streamlined approach for smaller facilities.
  • Amendment to the facility diagram requirement.
  • Amendment to the integrity testing requirement.

NATA published a complete analysis of the December 2008 rules that is available on the NATA SPCC Issue Page by clicking here.

Included in this new analysis will be the implementation date of November 20, 2009. This is currently the date by which the new parts of the regulations must be integrated into a facility's SPCC Plan and physical requirements must be installed. The aviation industry will have to wait to see if this date remains in place or if the EPA will make further changes. Changes to the December 2008 rules are also possible.

NATA will continue to provide detailed information to its members regarding new EPA rules and regulations. Questions and comments can be directed to Eric Byer.

Download a PDF copy of this Regulatory Report.

Association Discusses Comment Development Process With NFPA Officials: New NFPA Issue Resource Web Page Developed
Last week, NATA staff discussed with National Fire Protection Association (NFPA) officials the process by which the association may develop comments requesting the development of a new building fire code standard for general aviation aircraft hangars.

Over the coming weeks, NATA will develop and submit comments to the NFPA. NATA will then present this petition during the next meeting of the NFPA Standards Council on April 21-22, 2009, in Seattle, WA.

The association will also submit a membership application this week requesting membership on the NFPA Technical Committee, representing FBOs across the country that have aircraft hangars.

NATA has established a new NFPA 409 Issue Resource Page for the latest developments that members may view by clicking here.

For more information, please contact Eric Byer.

New "Playbook" Security Measures By Local TSA Officials Raises Concerns
The association continues to address the actions of local Transportation Security Administration (TSA) officials who recently incorporated new "Playbook" security measures at some commercial airports, including Nashville International Airport in Nashville, TN. These "Playbook" security measures included physical screening and searches of passengers and baggage.

TSA Headquarters staff state that the intent for utilizing "Playbook" security measures is to enable local TSA and FBO officials to coordinate a time where both entities can prepare and execute enhanced security measures. Incidents at Nashville and other locations have unfolded otherwise. TSA HQ staff have indicated that additional guidance will be provided to local TSA officials to be certain that "Playbook" security measures involve more coordination with FBOs to ensure that business is not interrupted. Part of the purpose of these enhanced security measures is to allow input from FBO personnel to local TSA officials to identify the best ways to improve security for GA operations.

The association has expressed concern over the use of "Playbook" security measures and has strongly encouraged TSA HQ to encourage local TSA officials to work in conjunction with FBO personnel to ensure minimal disruptions to business operations.

Association members are strongly urged to contact NATA Vice President of Government and Industry Affairs Eric Byer to report this type of activity at any airport in the U.S. as soon as possible. Byer may also be reached directly at (703) 575-2043.

Criminal Indictments Issued Against Platinum Jet Principals
Last week, criminal indictments were filed by the U.S. Attorney against six people associated with now defunct Platinum Jet Management.

Platinum Jet Management was the company that was found to have illegally operated the Challenger 600 that crashed in 2005 while attempting takeoff at Teterboro airport. The aircraft overran the end of the runway and crossed a major highway before crashing into a warehouse.

Named in the indictment were the owner/founders of Platinum Jet Management and four other individuals who were associated with the company.

According to a Department of Justice press release, the indictment alleges a conspiracy to commit continuous willful violations of regulatory requirements for the operation of commercial charter aircraft. The indictment also accuses the defendants of routinely undertaking and concealing dangerous fueling and weight distribution practices which existed on the Platinum-operated jet that failed to lift off at Teterboro on Feb. 2, 2005.

The FAA and Department of Transportation took administrative actions against Platinum Jet, Darby Aviation (the Part 135 operator that listed the accident aircraft on its certificate) and Blue Star Jets (the broker that chartered the flight). Significant changes to FAA's air carrier operational control guidance and increased enforcement were a direct result of this accident.

The DOJ Press Release gives detailed information on the specific allegations against the six men who were indicted.

NTSB Holds Public Hearing To Review Helicopter EMS Safety
The National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) last week held an in-depth public hearing on the safety of helicopter emergency medical services (EMS) operations. The goal of the four-day hearing was for NTSB to learn more about helicopter EMS, also know as "HEMS," operations in order to evaluate the factors that lead to accidents better.

NTSB Board Member Robert Sumwalt chaired the hearing. "In the last six years, we have seen 85 HEMS accidents, resulting in 77 fatalities," said Sumwalt. "The recent accident record is alarming and it is unacceptable," noted Sumwalt.

Approximately 40 witnesses testified on issues, such as, EMS operational structures and models, flight operations, aircraft safety equipment, training, and oversight. Witnesses included EMS operators, pilots, medical personnel, managers, aircraft manufacturers, training companies and the FAA.

A video archive of the hearing, exhibit items that were presented, and the entire public docket are available on the NTSB Web site at

Illegal Charter Hotline Jammed With Calls After Notice Is Sent
Last week, the FAA safety Web site ( publicized the NATA toll-free hotline to report suspected illegal charter activity. Within minutes of sending the announcement to Web site subscribers, the hotline was flooded with calls from people asking questions, such as "How do I know if a charter is illegal?"

NATA established the hotline in 2008 under an FAA grant. Anyone who suspects that illegal charter is being conducted can report, anonymously if desired, to the following toll-free number: 1-888-SKY-FLT1 (1-888-759-3581). All reports will be assigned a case-code for follow up. Reports are then forwarded to the FAA for investigation and action, if appropriate.

The NATA announcement of the hotline is available by clicking here.

Loudoun County, VA Board Of Supervisors Votes Against Property Tax Increase On Aircraft
Last week, the Loudoun County Board of Supervisors voted 8-1 against a property tax increase on aircraft based in Loudoun County, VA.

The Loudoun County Board of Supervisors, in Loudon County, Virginia, was considering raising the tax rate on aircraft to increase revenue for the Fiscal Year 2010 budget. Loudoun County Supervisor Kelly Burk advised the aviation community about the potential tax increase out of concern for the effect it would have on Leesburg Executive Airport as well as Dulles International Airport, both located in Loudoun County. The proposed rate increase was $4.20 per $100. The current tax rate, which will now remain in place, is $.01 per $100.

After learning of this proposal from Supervisor Burk, NATA launched a grassroots campaign encouraging all aircraft owners in Loudoun County, VA, to oppose the proposed tax increase.

"We greatly appreciate Supervisor Burk's support in opposing this tax rate increase," NATA President James K. Coyne stated. "We also appreciate all those aircraft owners in Loudoun County who weighed in via our Action Call released on November 19, 2008."

For more information on this topic, please click here.

NetJets Buys Airport Outside Frankfurt
NetJets Europe announced last Monday its intent to purchase Egelsbach Airport located south of Frankfurt International Airport. The purchase by NetJets was due in part due to the lack of slots at Frankfurt International Airport.

William Kelly, NetJets Europe CEO said: "We are in a unique position to invest in airfield improvements without needing to increase flight movement capacity. Unlike most airport operators, the NetJets business model is not dependent on increasing traffic numbers. The proposed acquisition demonstrates our willingness to invest for the benefit of our fractional owners while providing a service for other business aviation customers seeking to do business in the Frankfurt Rhine Main Region. We are committed to being a good neighbor and local partner to Egelsbach and the surrounding communities. We are actively engaging in extensive consultation with local business, civic and environmental leaders to ensure that local concerns are addressed."

The City of Egelsbach is anticipated to vote on the NetJets Europe bid by March.

Invite Members Of Congress To Tour Your Facility And Exhibit Virtues Of General Aviation Industry
As the President's Day congressional recess approaches, now is the time to host a Congressional tour of your facility. Legislation to reauthorize the FAA is on the calendar in the U.S. House of Representatives, and it is uncertain what priority the U.S. Senate will place on passing the legislation. Inviting Members of Congress and their staff to visit your facility gives you the perfect avenue to discuss the principal issues confronting our national air transportation system while allowing you to address other issues affecting your business. This one-on-one interaction will not only be beneficial to you and your business but will also educate our congressional leadership on the important impact our nation's aviation businesses and airline services companies have on the economy.

Click here to view NATA's Congressional Tour Memo.


PAC Contributions Make A Difference In Washington
Support NATAPAC Today!
Being politically active in Washington can be a challenge for many aviation businesses. NATA members own or operate full-time businesses and, especially during this current economic period, time is precious. However, when an important issue arises that requires legislative action becoming politically active is essential to addressing your cause. Whether in Washington or in your hometown, you need to reach out.

A political action committee, or PAC, is, as the name indicates, a political committee organized to aid candidates running for government office who are supportive of issues important to that political committee. Trade associations, corporations, unions, and other entities organize PACs as a way to generate funds from their members or employees enabling them to contribute to these candidates' campaigns. NATA's PAC, known as NATAPAC, was established to contribute to candidates running for public office who are supportive of the general aviation industry and the issues it faces.

NATAPAC Chairman Greg Arnold has issued a letter to NATA members highlighting how NATAPAC will be instrumental in achieving NATA's legislative agenda this year.

To view the 2009 NATAPAC letter, click here.

It is important to note that federal law requires all PAC donations to be personal contributions only. Company/corporate contributions are prohibited; therefore, company or corporate checks cannot be accepted.

To join NATAPAC, please fill out the 2009-2011 authorization form by clicking here.

To visit the NATAPAC Web site, click here.


March Symposium Addresses State Of Safety
The 2009 Air Charter Safety Symposium, presented by the Air Charter Safety Foundation (ACSF), provides unprecedented educational and networking opportunities for attendees.

The 2009 Air Charter Safety Symposium is March 3-4, 2009, at the NTSB Training Center in Ashburn, VA.

On Tuesday, March 3, the Air Charter Safety Symposium begins with an in-depth analysis of one company's efforts to implement an FAA-approved Aviation Safety Action Program (ASAP) and the resulting successful outcomes when these voluntary safety reporting systems are utilized.

Also on March 3, National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) Members will educate attendees by providing insight from their unique perspective. NTSB Vice Chairman Robert Sumwalt will emphasize the importance of Safety Management Systems and give proven tips for how aviation department leaders can persuade corporate leadership to embrace the adoption of SMS in their business. Member Deborah Hersman will join the Symposium to provide a briefing on the industry's overall safety record and offer her views on the safety challenges that will be faced in the future.

The second day of the Symposium will focus on the ACSF's Top 10 Safety Action Items. The Top 10 Safety Action Items are those areas that the Foundation believes require immediate action or intervention by the industry to counter negative trends and improve the safety of operations.

A detailed program schedule and registration information are available at Special early registration rates are available through February 20, 2009.


Three Major Opportunities To Boost Your Business Success In 2009
Surviving and even thriving in today's economy requires:
  • Highly skilled and well trained staff
  • Proven tools and techniques for understanding and properly managing your company's finances
  • Safe and secure operation - free from insurance and lawsuit risk and claims
  • Understanding of what lies ahead for our industry
  • Contact with leading industry experts and regulatory officials
  • Opportunities to connect with your business associates and customers
  • New ideas and sometimes even a return to basics for marketing and business plans

NATA provides three opportunities guaranteed to guide you through these challenging times and help you emerge victorious.

NATA's Education Week at the Aviation Industry Expo
March 9-12
Las Vegas

NATA is partnering with the Aviation Industry Expo to bring you an information-packed week of workshops, training seminars, product and service displays, networking opportunities and motivational events designed specifically to improve the performance and profitability of your aviation business.

Education Week offers hands-on opportunities for service personnel, supervisors and managers to gain knowledge and skills on aviation legal compliance issues, environmental compliance issues, line service supervision, excellent customer service, Safety 1st training, financial management, and OSHA requirements and training.

Air Charter Summit
(Held Back-to-Back with the FBO Leadership Conference)
June 8-10
Chantilly, VA

Chief pilots, directors and company executives of Part 135 operations are invited to receive an exclusive FAA regulatory briefing by the agency's highest-ranking officials. Charter providers will gain a clear market edge by meeting face-to-face with the DOT's and FAA's top regulatory officials and learn about key market drivers affecting their economic future from industry experts. As a representative of one of the most heavily regulated industries in the U.S., you must stay one step ahead of the regulatory and business conditions on the horizon.

The Summit's agenda includes sessions on certificate revocation, your rights in responding to enforcement actions, planning for Safety Management Systems, and the latest developments on the Large Aircraft Security Program.

The second day of the Summit overlaps the first day of the FBO Leadership Conference and offers several early sessions vital to every aviation business including: a panel on the future of general aviation manufacturing, marketing to a Ritz Carlton standard and clientele, and rebutting the public and media blitz against business aviation. NATA's Industry Excellence Awards will be presented in a morning ceremony.

FBO Leadership Conference
(Held Back-to-Back with the Air Charter Summit)
June 9-11
Chantilly, VA

Managers and senior-level executives of fixed base operations and vendors are invited to attend top-notch sessions, including courting your customers for repeat business, working with your airport for mutual success, using the economic stimulus package as a source of long-term growth instead of just a short-term solution, plus the panel on the future of aviation manufacturing, high-end customer service and rebutting the media blitz sessions.

You will also receive knowledge on the economic front, broaden your scope of new business, and exchange best practices with industry peers. The 2009 FBO Leadership Conference is the best opportunity for you to explore new and better ways to manage your FBO, maximize your business success and win in a tightening market.


NATA Weekly Survey
Should Congress approve legislation requiring the aviation industry to purchase carbon offsets?

Participate in survey.


Aviation's Effect On The Environment - Did You Know?
NATA's quick facts on the aviation industry's effect on the environment are designed to ensure that members take every step necessary to minimize the effect aviation has on the environment while recognizing the initiatives the industry has taken to reduce global warming.

Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Chair of the Senate Committee on Environmental and Public Works, last week announced her "Principles for Global Warming Legislation." Boxer anticipates introducing this new legislation in the coming weeks.

To view Boxer's "Principles for Global Warming Legislation," please click here.

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National Air Transportation Association
4226 King Street
Alexandria, VA 22302
Phone: (800)808-6282
Fax: (703)845-8176

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