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Homeland Security Chairman Favors LASP Rulemaking Committee

March 9, 2009 — March 10, 2009 – A highly influential voice on The Hill is an important contributor to the chorus of general-aviation groups and lawmakers opposing the Transportation Security Administration’s proposed Large Aircraft Security Program (LASP). As evidenced when the House Aviation Subcommittee today heard protests from general aviation groups including EAA, AOPA, NBAA, and GAMA (see story), the concerns being raised resonate with objections that the chairman of the House Committee on Homeland Security had voiced earlier this month.

Bearing particular influence because his House committee has jurisdiction over the TSA, Representative Bennie G. Thompson (D-MS), in a March 2 letter urged the agency to consult further with general aviation stakeholders and Congress before issuing final rules.

Thompson questioned whether the TSA had provided sufficient rationale to justify its proposed security measures, which would place airline-like security requirements on general-aviation operators of aircraft weighing 12,500 pounds or more. “The Committee is also concerned that the formulation of the NPRM was not based on a threat and risk methodology process tailored to the general aviation environment,” the letter read.

He also challenged some of the LASP’s proposed measures. “Several critical elements in the NPRM, in particular, appear to be problematic, infeasible, or overly burdensome to industry,” he wrote.

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