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|Top News: User Fees Have (At Least) Nine Lives||back to
WHY THE USER FEES BATTLE ISN'T OVER
user fees aren't in the Obama administration's budget, but they still
may be packaged elsewhere, AOPA's Lorraine Howerton told AVweb
Thursday. Howerton is AOPA's vice president of legislative affairs, and
while she said AOPA's efforts had created some breathing room, the
country's fiscal woes may become a serious influence on future funding
decisions. As the budget deficit soars, legislators are under increasing
pressure to shrink federal spending wherever possible. Currently, the
general fund for the FAA is down 30 percent, said Howerton. She added
that the decrease may translate into a greater draw on the Aviation
Trust Fund, and that draw may in turn drive legislators to seek
alternate forms of funding -- potentially, user fees. There are other
Business Aviation Will Help
Companies Not Only Survive
But Prosper During the Current Financial Crisis
To be your most productive, and your most efficient, you must keep
flying. Because in so doing, you will emerge from these times even
stronger than before. And you will replace the uncertainty that
surrounds many, with the confidence and courage to light the way for
OPENS BLOCKED N NUMBERS
A federal court has ruled that the
FAA must release aircraft registration information previously kept
secret in a special program if it receives a Freedom of Information
request. For about 10 years, private aircraft operators have been able
to have their N numbers "blocked" from outside scrutiny under the
National Business Aviation Association's Blocked Aircraft Registration
Request (BARR) program. In late 2008, a non-profit
investigative journalism Web site called ProPublica
submitted an FOIA request to the FAA to release the list of BARR
participants, claiming the owners of the aircraft were using the program
to prevent public scrutiny of their use of the aircraft. The FOIA
request came shortly after the Big Three automakers made headlines by
using corporate aircraft to travel to Washington to ask for federal
bailouts. NBAA went to court to block the release of the information
citing security concerns, but on Friday a D.C. district court ruled the
FOIA requests must be honored; it did not extend the order to include
real-time requests for information on aircraft. More...
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TO REVIEW STACK CRASH
The TSA says it will review Joseph
Stack's Feb. 18 crash of his Piper Dakota into an Austin IRS office
building and apply its findings to its future anti-terrorism
decision-making, USA Today reported Friday. "It may simply be a confirmation
that, for very small planes, you're not going to see a lot of
casualties. Or there may be something else we're unaware of," John
Sammon, TSA assistant administrator, said. A law enforcement official
familiar with the Stack investigation told CNN last week that
investigators were trying to determine if Stack had removed seats from
the plane and replaced them with one or more full fuel containers. In
Stack's case, the building suffered impact and significant fire damage
while he and one person on the ground were killed, and more than ten
others were injured. The TSA says it will collect information from the
FBI, and other agencies' investigations into the Austin crash, to
develop an understanding of the damage to property and people that could
potentially be caused by similar intentional acts. The review may be the
first of its kind involving a private aircraft to be performed by the
CHAIR ADDRESSES PILOT FATIGUE, TRAINING
NTSB Chairman Deborah
Hersman told the Senate Thursday that measures are needed to ensure
pilots are better trained and better rested before they fly. "If we are
serious about aviation safety, we must establish a system that minimizes
pilot fatigue and ensures that flight crews report to work rested and
fit for duty," Hersman said in testimony. Hersman delivered her speech
on the subject of aviation safety more than one year after the fatal
crash of Colgan Air's Continental Connection Flight 3407 near Buffalo.
Meanwhile in Buffalo, Thursday, a report in the Buffalo News noted that
the pilot of Flight 3407 had slept the previous night in the airline's
crew room and suggested that backward progress had since been made. According to the article, Colgan has "come up with a
way of making it more difficult for pilots to do that. It's ordered the
lights to be kept on in its crew rooms." Hersman's full comments
continued on the broader subject of crew rest and expanded to crew
training, ranging from remedial work to stall training, to the NTSB's
most wanted list. More...
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CAP PLANES SOUND TSUNAMI ALERT
The Civil Air Patrol launched
nine aircraft in Hawaii Saturday to warn coastal residents of an
impending tsunami. The wave was formed by a magnitude 8.8 earthquake off
the coast of Chile and resulted in tsunami warnings for much of the
Pacific Ocean from Russia to Australia. The quake hit about 3:34 a.m.
Chile time and by 6 a.m. local time CAP crews in Hawaii were in the air.
"Eighty percent of the shoreline in Hawaii does not have a fixed base
siren," said Hawaii Wing Commander Col. Roger Caires. "CAP aircraft are
the only resource for issuing tsunami warnings, via a speaker system
attached to the outside lower portion of their plane's fuselage.
Phase One Is
Big South Fork Airpark
is proud to announce that construction has
been completed for Phase 1 of the Airpark. This includes the welcome
center, underground utilities, city water and sewer services,
electricity, natural gas, fiber-optic DSL, roads, hangars, apron, direct
taxiway access, stables, and equestrian center. Join us for a Winter
Escape March 13-14.
Be our guest! Stay at one of our luxury houses,
indulge in a gourmet meal, and enjoy all of the amenities the Airpark
has to offer. A hangar and rental car are included. All for only $99.
Space is limited.
Click here to schedule your Winter
Escape today, and you will be sitting by the fire in no
SEEKS AIRPORT LAND AT OCEANO?
Developer Jeff Edwards has
scheduled a March 17 meeting to discuss his unsolicited plan to turn
Oceano County Airport, near San Luis Obispo, Calif., into a non-airport
property. Meanwhile, Bill Robeson, a city planner who works with the
city's Airport Land Use Commission, told SanLuisObispo.com that when it comes to closing the
airport, "none of the hearing bodies for the county are considering it."
But Edwards, a private land planner, sees "enormous potential" for the
nearly beachfront property that he says could translate into
"significant cash flow to the county if they were to close the airport
and lease it for development." He has advertised his upcoming meeting
through a press release, has invited representatives from San Luis
Obispo County and candidates running for local positions, and said "the
public is encouraged to attend." Oceano operates a 2325-by-50 foot paved
runway and is home to 13 aircraft (10 singles and three ultralights).
The facility serves transient pilots and its land-use plan estimates
12,500 operations per year. More...
AeroExpo UK: 25-27 June
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Showcasing ALL sections of the market, including the latest aircraft
available from light aircraft, or pistons and turboprops from all
the major manufacturers, to gliders and power gliders;
at Wycombe Air Park (EGTB) has them covered.
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Q: What's the Difference
Between a $10,000 Annual and a $2,500 Annual?
and his team of seasoned maintenance professionals are
saving their aircraft-owner clients thousands of dollars a year in parts
and labor not to mention hours of hassle by providing
professional maintenance management for owner-flown singles and twins.
Learn how they do it
|The Top Reporter on Our Crack Staff ... Is You!||back to
MARCH 1, 2010
Letter of the Week: Privacy Before
This is the state of our insane judicial system. In the
Wins Appeal Over Health Record Disclosure," this "disabled" pilot
blatantly lies multiple times on his pilot's certificate renewal
paperwork so he can get what he wants, flying illegally, possibly
jeopardizing innocent lives while he is taking medications.
when he is caught, he sues on a claim that his privacy was violated. To
one federal agency, he discloses his HIV condition so that he can milk
money from SSA for being disabled; to the FAA, he lies that he is
perfectly healthy so he can fly.
Once you disclose info to a
government agency, where is privacy? After shopping his lawsuit to
enough courts, he finds one that awards him money from the government
for a violation of privacy.
through to read the rest of this week's letters.
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OF THE WEEK: STARLINK AVIATION (CYUL, MONTREAL,
This week saw more AVweb readers telling us about
their favorite FBOs via our online nomination form which makes us
feel good about traveling around North America, but it makes picking an
"FBO of the Week" a little more difficult. After some thoughtful
consideration, we decided to award our latest blue ribbon to Starlink
Aviation at Montreal, Québec's Pierre Elliot Trudeau
International Airport (CYUL).
AVweb reader Keith
McLellan is a regular visitor to CYUL and reports that he has "tried
all the FBOs on the field," but he's not settled on Starlink as his
homebase-away-from-home, "and for good reason," he
Zoran Bratuljevic and
his hand-picked staff of professionals are the best anywhere! The guys
and girls at Starlink are very sharp, courteous, friendly, and truly
sincere in their efforts to take care of your needs. [G]reat service, a
nice facility with all the amenities you want, a well-trained and
friendly staff, and competitive pricing for all services. I highly
recommend them! Oh, and just FYI, how many FBOs offer a late-model BMW
as a crew car?
Keep those nominations
coming. For complete contest rules, click
AVweb is actively seeking out the best FBOs in
the country and another one, submitted by you, will be spotlighted here
next Monday! More...
YEARS AND NOW 15 GRAND GIVEAWAYS ... IT'S YOUR CHANCE TO WIN A GARMIN
AERA 510 HANDHELD GPS
Win a Garmina aera 510 handheld GPS as we
celebrate our 15th Anniversary! All you have to do is click here to enter your name and e-mail address.
(You only have to enter once, and you'll be entered in our prize
drawings for the entire year so if you've already entered, you're
And no, we're not
going to rent or sell your name, ever. Tell your friends, and
invite them to sign up for AVweb so they can qualify for our 15
Grand Giveaways prize drawings, too. (We won't spam them, either
but we hope they will sign up for our newsletters.)
entries is 11:59pm Zulu time March 12, 2010.
Click here to read the contest rules and
Congratulations to Rod Anson of Camperdown,
Victoria (Australia), who won 100,000 Air BP Bravo Rewards
Points! (click here
to get your own Rewards Points from Air BP)
Overhead on SoCal Approach frequency near a busy
Southern California airport last year:
Cherokee N12345 is with you, with X-ray for the ILS to
"Roger. N12345, fly heading 280 and
descend to 3,000."
"SOCAL, N12345. We have a
problem. We seemed to have lost our squawk code. Can we have another
"N12345, would you look around the
cockpit? Sometimes stuff falls on the floor."
THE AVWEBFLASH TEAM
AVwebFlash is a weekly
summary of the latest news, articles, products, features, and events
featured on AVweb, the
internet's aviation magazine and news service.
AVwebFlash team is:
here to send a letter to the
editor. (Please let us know if your letter is not
intended for publication.)
Comments or questions
about the news should be sent
Have a product or service to advertise
on AVweb? A question on marketing? Send it to AVweb's
If you're having
trouble reading this newsletter in its HTML-rich format (or if you'd
prefer a lighter, simpler format for your PDA or handheld device),
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Navigate. Communicate. More...