LASP Hearings Start Next Week

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New rules proposed by the Transportation Security Administration would affect only the operators of large aircraft -- over 12,500 pounds -- but the general aviation community, representing pilots of aircraft of all sizes, is united in opposition to the plan. Public hearings on the Large Aircraft Security Program (LASP) begin next week, Tuesday, Jan. 6, at Westchester County Airport in White Plains, N.Y. In a briefing paper, EAA said that it "strongly encourages" everyone involved in recreational, personal and business aviation to participate in the TSA public hearings. EAA is concerned that the proposal would infringe "on the freedom of movement by private U.S. citizens and their family, friends, and business associates in their own personal or business-use aircraft." Ed Bolen, CEO and president of the National Business Aviation Association, plans to be in White Plains to testify. NBAA has posted a list of concerns with the proposal, which includes a TSA checklist of 80 items that would be prohibited from the cabin, a requirement for private aircraft to carry federal air marshals on demand, and fees for required "security audits." Anyone who wishes to provide oral testimony can attend the New York hearing, which begins at 9 a.m., with registration starting at 8. For more information about the hearings, click here for the complete TSA official notice. Other public meetings are scheduled for Jan. 8 in Atlanta, Ga.; Jan. 16 in Chicago; Jan. 23 in Burbank, Calif.; and Jan. 28 in Houston, Texas.

For the full text of the TSA NPRM, all 260 pages of it, click here. All interested persons may provide written comments, which must be received by Feb. 27. To post a comment online, click here, and then click on the "Add Comments" icon.