Though proposed Oct. 22, 2003, and blasted with the majority of 2,225 written statements offered through two comment periods -- including comments from the U.S. Small Business Administration, comments from AOPA and comments from EAA -- it was last Tuesday that saw the first public meeting held by the FAA in D.C. on the proposed rules for air tour and sightseeing operations. Nearly all comments so far submitted have said the FAA offers "no justification" for the rule, its conclusions are unsupported and its impact would be economically destructive for more than scores of businesses -- AOPA estimates it would force 1,370 to close their doors. Representing the interests of larger pilot groups, most alphabet groups are calling for the rule to be withdrawn entirely. Expect another public meeting, May 21 in Las Vegas (for details, scroll to page four). FAA officials had hoped to use the first meeting as a forum to collect information not previously submitted in writing ... at least they got it in a different form. In short, the kinder, gentler, customer-service-oriented FAA got an earful. "... There is no justification provided" for "the implementation of new restrictions on private pilots engaged in charitable, or community events, or aircraft demonstration flights," wrote EAA.