The FAA said on Wednesday it has revoked the air carrier certificate held by AMI Jet Charter of Burlingame, Calif., which was suspended earlier this month. The company had tried to work with the FAA to resolve the issues, but apparently to no avail. The FAA says AMI allowed "entities that do not hold air carrier certificates" to exercise control over flights and failed to keep records needed to ensure safety. The agency's earlier actions against AMI provoked strong reactions from the industry -- James Coyne, president of the National Air Transportation Association, said he was "extremely angered" by the FAA's "shocking" action, and National Business Aviation Association President Ed Bolen said the FAA action should be viewed as a wake-up call to all charter providers. "This case sends a clear message that the FAA will act when it finds evidence that any air carrier is engaged in the franchising or rental of its air carrier certificate," Nicholas Sabatini, FAA associate administrator for aviation safety, said on Wednesday. "Federal Aviation Regulations clearly require that an air carrier maintain operational control of the aircraft and crews on its certificate."
The FAA said AMI permitted TAG Aviation -- an entity not holding a U.S. air carrier certificate -- and various "charter ally" companies to schedule flight crews and operate flights in violation of federal regulations. The FAA alleges that AMI also failed to keep required records on maintenance, crew members, ground and flight training, and flight and duty time for the aircraft and crews operated by those companies.