MPA LEGISLATION REPORT
September 2007

GREETINGS! First, Here's an update from Washington, D.C. Both the United States House, and Senate have moved their respective bills out of committee and await floor votes and conference committees to hash out the precise funding mechanisms.

Primary issues yet to be resolved include raising the cap on passenger facility charge, which could go to $7; potential increases in aviation fuel taxes for business aviation, and, implementation of a $25 per instrument flight fee to pay for ATC modernization, or should we say digitalization.

The good news is that both houses agree that the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) needs to be adequately funded, and it appears $4 billion a year, could become a reality.

The aviation bills will be competing with a lot of last-minute legislation on Capital Hill, before all the current aviation authorization expires on September 30, 2007.

Secondly, Transportation Security Administration (TSA) implements new screening procedures, beginning August 4th. 1. TSA will no longer enforce the lighter ban; however, torchlighters remain a safety issue and thus prohibited in the sterile areas; 2. Video game consoles must be removed from carry-on luggage; 3. TSA will implement new liquid container screening procedures to take place on the back end of the screening checkpoint; 4. TSA document checkers will be magnifying glasses and fluorescent lighting on identification to ensure the ID is valid; and 5. Military personnel in uniform will not be subject to random screening.

Thirdly, Government Accountability Office (GAO) releases a report examining future capital needs at airports and whether or not funding will be available to meet those needs. GAO found that capital needs will exceed available funds by at least $1 billion annually through 2011; www.gao.gov.

Fourthly, Department of Homeland Security (DHS) is changing the way aviation security is handled, to allow it to take over the role of checking passenger information from airlines. DHS sources say the airlines have not been doing the job consistently or effectively.

Fifthly, Here is an update concerning Missouri Aviation. The only Airport and Aviation Bills are as follows:

94th General Assembly, 1st Regular Session (2007)
Bills Indexed by Subject
AIRCRAFT AND AIRPORTS

HB 118 --- Sponsor: Schaaf, Robert
Specifies the situations in which the Civil Air Patrol may be activated, which missions are federal or state, and who pays for the missions

HB 302 --- Sponsor: Bruns, Mark J. --- CoSponsor: Schaaf, Robert
Relating to State Aviation Trust Funds and air traffic control towers partially funded by the federal government under a cost-sharing program

HB 305 --- Sponsor: Bruns, Mark J. --- CoSponsor: Page, Sam
Increases the limit on the amount deposited to the aviation trust fund to eight million five hundred thousand dollars

HB 529 --- Sponsor: Bruns, Mark J.
Changes the laws regarding the Aviation Trust Fund and air traffic control towers

HB 571 --- Sponsor: St. Onge, Neal C. --- CoSponsor: Schneider, Vicki
Changes the definition of "commercial aircraft" by lowering the maximum certified gross take-off weight from 7,000 to 1,000 pounds

HB 619 --- Sponsor: Aull, Joe --- CoSponsor: Schaaf, Robert
Specifies the situations in which the Civil Air Patrol may be activated, which missions are federal or state, and who pays for the missions

HB 624 --- Sponsor: Wilson, Larry --- CoSponsor: Quinn, Paul
Requires operators of storage facilities to provide documentation for property tax purposes

SB 120 --- Sponsor: Nodler, Gary
Increases the cap on the Aviation Trust Fund and allows the Aviation Trust Fund to be used for certain federal air traffic control cost-sharing programs

SB 602 --- Sponsor: Kennedy, Harry
Creates a sales and use tax exemption for purchases of aviation fuel for transoceanic flights


Note: Here's your web site address for Texas Legislation:
www.texas.gov.
Look for Transportation-Aviation, to search all Aviation Bills.

Note: Here's your web site address for Illinois Legislation:
www.illinois.gov.
Look for Transportation-Aviation, to search all Aviation Bills.

Now, In Conclusion, Remember, we as USPA, MPA, EAA, AOPA, or any other State Pilot Associations of which you may be a member, all have a powerful voice, be it here in Missouri, Indiana, Texas, or whatever state you may represent. Every group of pilots and taxpayers carries a strong voice to Washington, D.C., and on the State and Local Level.

So Let's not forget to exercise our privileges, and continue to make a "Difference for General Aviation."

SAFE FLYING!

Larry G. Harmon
Legislation Chairman
E-mail address: MPALHARMON228@aol.com


Who represents me in Jefferson City?

Back to Larry's Main Page

Back to the current President's Main Page