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EAA Advocacy Work Continues Moving Forward

April 23, 2020 - Even though COVID-19 and its fallout dominate today's news, including in aviation, EAA's advocacy team continues to focus on solutions and answers for other important issues throughout the country.

During the chaotic and challenging times brought about by the global pandemic, EAA, along with other GA organizations, is focused on major issues of the day, such as ensuring unfettered access to the national airspace system; relief from pilot, airworthiness, and aircraft certification deadlines and expirations; temporary exemption from aviation fuel taxes; and the continued viability of the Aviation Trust Fund. Along with those efforts, EAA continues to work for its members on the sorts of issues that predated the pandemic and still need to be resolved.

Continued work on airport advocacy. EAA recently joined other aviation groups in supporting our members at Dillingham Airfield on the northwest side of Oahu, Hawaii. The airport operates under a unique lease agreement between the U.S. Army, which founded the airfield as a military asset, and the state of Hawaii. The Hawaii Department of Transportation is seeking to terminate the lease in June, which would have caused hardship for aircraft owners based there, especially during the current COVID-19 situation. We are working with our Hawaiian members as well as AOPA and other aviation groups to support the field's continued operation.

The DPE Reform working group is continuing to meet virtually and develop much needed recommendations for Designated Pilot Examiners. EAA is chairing the group with more than 25 participants from across the U.S.

Members are receiving EAA's assistance on specific aircraft certification issues through direct intervention with various parts of the FAA.

Work on the FAA's Safety Analysis Team (SAT), part of the GA Joint Steering Committee, continues through online and virtual meetings. EAA's Tom Charpentier will be co-chairing the SAT's next working group, investigating the factors that lead to fatal accidents due to airframe and system failure. Both the FAA and NTSB have complimented EAA for its ability and willingness to find ways to make sport and recreational aviation even safer.

As the ADS-B mandate passed in January, EAA concluded its role as part of the FAA Equip 2020 group that recommended and monitored best practices for compliance by those who need to incorporate that identification technology into their aircraft.

Work continues with FAA and industry on the test protocols and potential pathways to fleet authorization for companies proposing potential high-octane unleaded alternative fuels to 100LL.

EAA's advocacy team is engaged in the essential day-to-day efforts to protect GA freedoms and engage in issues on the local, state, and federal levels. This is especially important given the many uncertainties that are part of the COVID-19 situation, which may lead some governmental bodies and airport officials to make interpretations or rules that counter FAA regulations or national airspace jurisdiction.

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