Regulations Destroying Aviation Revenue
But even if the pain of the ADIZ is gut-wrenching to pilots across the nation, it's the economic impact that carries the clout. The town of Leesburg, Va., northwest of Washington, sent a representative with facts and figures, plus a resolution from the town council opposing the permanent ADIZ proposal and asking for relaxed restrictions. Dennis Boykin, a member of the Leesburg Airport Commission, told those in attendance that at least 20 airplanes (almost 10 percent) have left the field for more convenient locations, a flight school has closed and fuel sales are down 30 percent. And while airports in similarly affluent areas elsewhere in the country are bursting at the seams with a flood of aircraft seeking space, Leesburg has room for more airplanes. "We have an airport in the richest county in the U.S. and we have vacant tie downs," he said. According to AOPA's account of the meeting, others reported major financial consequences. A helicopter company that shuttled people from downtown New York to downtown Washington is closing with a loss estimated at $75 million. At Tipton Airport, plans to build new hangars have been scuttled because of the ADIZ.