AOPA Spent $4.8 Million On Lobbying

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AOPA spent almost $4.8 million—or a little more than $10 per member—buttonholing federal politicians and bureaucrats on a range of issues of interest to GA pilots in 2007. Groups are required to disclose the money they spend on lobbying in Washington and give a breakdown on the issues addressed by those efforts. Of course, most of that money has been used to bend the ears of those who can affect the outcome of future FAA funding. The FAA wants to introduce a user fee system, which AOPA and virtually all GA groups oppose. AOPA spent more than $1.4 million in the second half of the year on that issue alone.

But hardly a week goes by that the organization doesn’t report that it’s stirring the pot on any number of issues involving the feds, and stumping the hallways of the Capitol costs money. While the Department of Transportation would eat up most of that time and money, AOPA also reported that it drummed on the desks of officials in the Department of Defense (military operating areas) and Transportation Security Administration (TFRs, ADIZ, etc.), among others.