July 28, 2013 - U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Oklahoma) and Rep. Tom Petri (R-Wisconsin) have raised their objections to the FAA's fees for air traffic services to new Department of Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx, calling for reconsideration of those assessments.
Sen. Inhofe told the POLITICO website that he and Secretary Foxx discussed the issue following the secretary's appearance at last week's Senate Environment and Public Works Committee session.
"He's considering this," Sen. Inhofe told POLITICO. "He's going to look into this and maybe consider just going ahead and paying, as they should for this."
Petri, who represents Oshkosh in the House, followed that report with his own letter to Secretary Foxx, thanking the newly confirmed cabinet member for reconsidering the issue. Petri called the decision to assess EAA "misguided and shortsighted" as the FAA's core mission is ensuring safety and providing air traffic control - functions for which general aviation already contributes through fuel taxes.
"We appreciate the efforts of Sen. Inhofe and Rep. Petri on this matter, as they realize how important general aviation is to America and how important AirVenture is to general aviation," said Doug Macnair, EAA's vice president of government relations.
EAA will keep the visibility high on the issue during AirVenture, where attendees can stop by the EAA Welcome Center and learn more about the current situation and the efforts to counter the ATC fees, including EAA's petition before the U.S. Court of Appeals in Chicago.