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  May 23, 2016 — Volume 15, Issue 21 
  This Week's Top Stories 

FAA Charter Industry Report Demonstrates Folly of User Fees on General Aviation

Last Tuesday, NATA President and CEO Thomas L. Hendricks commented on an FAA study of scheduled and non-scheduled air operators mandated by Congress as part of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 (PL 112-95, Section 409). The study validates NATA’s assertion of the importance of the charter industry to aviation and underscores the folly of proposals to assess user fees on this segment of general aviation. Hendricks stated, "[The study] confirms that most charter operators are small businesses operating one or two aircraft. The report also demonstrates the vital role of charter operators in the national economy, providing critical air service to nearly five times as many communities as the scheduled airlines. Most important, it notes the ever-increasing safety record of the air charter industry.” Read more.


NATA Joins Industry in Support of VA Flight Training Benefits

Last week, NATA, along with other aviation industry groups, wrote the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee urging continued support of veterans’ flight training benefits. Currently under consideration is S. 2921, the Veterans First Act, intended to improve the culture at the Department of Veterans Affairs and make improvements to various veterans’ benefits programs and health care. The groups explain that capping veteran flight training benefits, as proposed in a House passed bill, will limit opportunities for veterans who want to pursue an aviation career and impose significant financial burdens as there are little to no opportunities to obtain federally backed loans for such training. “We look forward to continuing our work with you and the VA to find a balance that will meet the educational needs and aspirations of our veterans who have the skill set and determination for successful careers in the aviation industry,” the letter states.


Hotel Room Block and Sponsorship Opportunities Close May 27th for 2016 Aviation Business Conference

Seats and hotel rooms for the NATA 2016 Aviation Business Conference are filling up fast. There are only two weeks left to register for this two-day event, held steps from the United States Capitol. The conference sessions are tailored to the issues impacting the many segments of aviation business including air charter, maintenance, FBOs and more. Plan on participating in the industry's most comprehensive policy and networking event designed to help you succeed in today's complex and challenging marketplace. Sponsorship opportunities are available until May 27th, starting at $250! Click here to view the list. Hotel rooms are very limited, book your reservation online through NATA’s room block by Friday, May 27, 2016.


NATA Participates in Piston Aviation Fuel Initiative (PAFI) Steering Group Meeting

Last week, NATA staff participated in a PAFI Steering Group (PSG) meeting at the FAA William J. Hughes Technical Center in Atlantic City. The PSG, consisting of the FAA and industry, discussed the status of Phase I close-out activities and changes pertaining to the lab tests, emissions and toxicology assessments; the overall Phase II plan and schedule along with status updates on engine and aircraft test plans; and the Technical Advisory Committee’s work requirements and in-kind support activities. The group also reviewed future communication strategies for the program. The next scheduled PSG meeting will occur the week of August 8, 2016 in Boston.

  Industry News

Department of Labor Announces Changes to Overtime Rules


On May 17th, the Department of Labor announced its final rule on changes in overtime exemption regulations. Effective December 1, 2016, no employee who has a guaranteed salary of less than $47,476 will qualify as exempt under the executive, administrative, or professional exemptions, the current minimum salary level is $23,660. NATA filed in opposition to the proposal last year after consulting with membership on its possible impacts. Our filing noted the proposal “will inhibit the promotion of employees to management positions and return some current managers to hourly status. The end result will be reduced take home pay and loss of benefits. Aviation businesses are by their nature spread throughout the nation and often found in parts of the country where the cost of living is low. These businesses will be especially hard hit by this ‘one-size-fits-all’ proposal.” Human resource company ADP is strongly recommending companies review their personnel guidelines in advance of the December 1st implementation date.


FAA Fly Safe: Prevent Loss of Control Accidents


The FAA and general aviation groups, including NATA, have launched a national safety campaign this flying season called #FlySafe to educate the GA community on how to prevent Loss of Control (LOC) accidents. LOC can happen when an aircraft enters a flight regime that is outside its normal flight envelope and may quickly develop into a stall or spin. This month’s topic focuses on spatial disorientation, which is caused by the body’s senses misrepresenting the its position in space — literally making it difficult for the pilot to know which way is “up.”

  Association Highlights

Free Safety 1st FBO Status Map


The FBO Status Map is a web-based resource to assist aircraft operators in locating FBOs and ground handlers that are Safety 1st qualified and IS-BAH registered. NATA created the map to supplement the existing processes used by aircraft operators when selecting an FBO. The map is searchable by airport ID, company name, address and allows for additional details for each operation. Safety 1st participants can enhance their existing record for a yearly fee, per location ($75 members/$200 nonmember). The listing enhancement includes adding their website, logo contact information and more. Interested businesses can get started by emailing

To view the FBO Status Map, please visit or


Flag Pins for Veterans Project Returns for 2016 | NATA Welcomes Our Newest Participant Gary Jet Center, Inc.


NATA’s annual Flag Pins for Veterans Project runs from May 1st until Veteran’s Day 2016. Once again, project participants are asked to display American-made flag pins in their operations with signage suggesting a $1.00 donation per pin, or make a direct donation to the project. Last year’s campaign raised $30,000 for Veteran’s Airlift Command and The Congressional Medal of Honor Foundation. We are off to a great start this year with 12 participating member companies. For more information, click here or contact Shannon Chambers at to participate.

 Member Spotlight 

JetSuiteX Launches New Flight Service Between Los Angeles and Las Vegas


TStarting this week, JetSuiteX will introduce weekday and Sunday service between Los Angeles and Las Vegas. JetSuiteX’s new service will connect Burbank Bob Hope Airport to McCarran International Airport with three daily roundtrip flights — similar to its current service between Los Angeles and the San Francisco East Bay, which it is also now increasing to three roundtrips each day. “Airport congestion and worsening security delays have made short-haul air travel sometimes more of a hassle than it’s worth” said JetSuite CEO Alex Wilcox. For more information, click here. Look for a profile of JetSuite in the second quarter Aviation Business Journal.


Million Air to Lease FBO at Westchester County Airport


aNATA member Million Air will invest $70 million in new infrastructure at Westchester County Airport in White Plains, NY. The upgrades include a new terminal, expanded hangar and a reception building, according to President and CEO Roger Woolsey. The 30-year ground lease agreement will allow Million Air to operate both the original light aviation facility established in 1999 and a newly added full-service heavy aircraft fixed-base operation. The new FBO will provide a range of services including fueling and general aviation maintenance and is expected to add about 170 jobs over the next two years. For more information, click here.


Safety 1st Regional Advanced Line Service Workshop | Hayward, CA


NATA Safety 1st is pleased to bring its unique mix of technical and service training to Hayward, CA on July 12-13, 2016 at APP Jet Center. The Safety 1st Advanced Line Service (ALS) Workshop is a two-day training event designed to provide the knowledge and skills needed to make your line service team succeed and become new leaders within your company. Register now before seats are gone! Additional dates and locations for this workshop are available here.


Conklin & de Decker Associates and NATA to Host Commercial Operators Tax Seminar in July


On July 13th, Conklin & de Decker Associates, Inc. and NATA will once again offer the only tax seminar designed for commercial operators. The Commercial Operators Tax Seminar looks at tax issues that you face every day in your operations including: federal excise taxes, state taxes, audits, international fees, and depreciation and passive activity loss rules. For the seminar agenda, click here. To register for the tax seminar, click here. Sponsorship opportunities are available, please contact Shannon Chambers at




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