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Thread: FAA Wants EAA To Pay Them To Staff Oshkosh l

  1. #1

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    FAA Wants EAA To Pay Them To Staff Oshkosh l

    Thu, May 23, 2013
    Update: Startling... FAA Wants EAA To Pay Them To Staff Oshkosh

    Could The FAA Get ANY Stranger? Worse Yet... Will They?

    ANN RealTime News Update, 0001ET, 05.23.13: The FAA has twice promised ANN a statement this day in order to understand some of their rationale for this sudden AirVenture cost recovery/User Fee scheme. If and when they provide this promised statement, we will make sure you see it right away. In the meantime, we have talked with EAA Boss Jack Pelton about the matter and have come to the understanding that EAA WILL apparently wind up having to pay the FAA something for their services... the same ones that we all thought were paid for by our income, fuel, and numerous other taxes. The primary question is just how much will EAA pay for all this and what effect might it have on AirVenture 2013? EAA has apparently NOT had a lot of warning about this and the manner and timing with which the FAA has extortionately demanded these fees positively begs for an aggressive Congressional investigation. ANN is currently researching additional details about this matter and will present more info as it becomes available.
    Original Report, 1502 ET, 052213: Despite a clear mandate in opposition to user fees and similar funding mechanisms oft discussed by the FAA, the FAA has decided to start enacting some user fees of its own. And... they've made a pretty aggressive demand for EAA to pay them to staff the event.
    The EAA, via published statements, has noted that, "General aviation is wearing the target as the FAA looks for revenue, with the agency appearing to be readying a plan to add burdens on recreational aviators with increased costs for a variety of activities. This is occurring even after the Congress enacted legislation that enabled the FAA to fully fund air traffic services. The agency is moving more aggressively toward assessing costs on duties that have always been covered under the FAA budget, including some essential air traffic operations and functions."
    EAA's Dick Knapinski has confirmed that the FAA has its hand out... and to the tune of well into six figures. EAA says that, "the agency is asking EAA to cover certain costs for its AirVenture operations, including air traffic controllers' travel, per diems, and overtime, which had traditionally been covered by the FAA. This may be an early indication of further efforts by the FAA to charge GA operators for functions in ways that could add unforeseen costs for the average pilot who simply wants to enjoy flying.
    "This issue is significantly bigger than AirVenture," said EAA Chairman Jack J. Pelton. "We'll have full air traffic staffing and operations at Oshkosh and are well-prepared for our event. Unfortunately this is coming at a great cost to EAA. The larger issue, however, is about the unknown and alarming new direction the FAA is taking in charging for an equivalent level of safety that has previously been provided. If the FAA asks for reimbursement on certain AirVenture operations for which it has always budgeted, where else could the agency unilaterally impose assessments, fees, and other costs on GA? It's a frightening thought."
    EAA adds that, "GA should continue to contribute its fair share to FAA and national airspace operations through the current aviation fuel tax. EAA will, however, vigorously oppose efforts to burden aviators with costs for which the FAA already receives funding and has budgeted as part of its stated mission of providing a safe, efficient national airspace system."

  2. #2

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    Why are we paying aircraft fuel taxes?
    Last edited by RV8505; 05-23-2013 at 12:24 AM.

  3. #3

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    Do you have the misunderstanding that aviation fuel taxes go to the FAA? Nope.

    Best of luck,

    Wes
    N78PS

  4. #4

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    If the FAA wants travel and lodging, I say let's go pick them up in our aircraft and let's have them camp in the north 40.

    Wish the controller union would put out their position.

  5. #5
    EAA Staff / Moderator Hal Bryan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Anymouse View Post
    Realizing just who it is that wrote the article, I'm wondering what the real story is.
    Just FYI, Jim's article was written after we posted ours and he called and spoke with Jack and Dick:

    http://eaa.org/news/2013/2013-05-22_...shortfalls.asp

    Hal Bryan
    EAA #638979
    Online Community Manager
    EAA—The Spirit of Aviation

  6. #6

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    Why should the FAA do these EXTRA services for free? Just because they have in the past, doesn't mean they must in the future.

  7. #7
    IIRC, Sun-N-Fun had to pay for their controllers this year, too. Shouldn't be a surprise....

    Ron Wanttaja

  8. #8
    EAA does not have to pay for anything, they are a private entity. There are volunteer controllers. If Whitman field is open, which it will be, and that tower is staffed by the FAA, that tower must exhibit its duties. The FAA could close the tower for the event, but the FAA cannot close the event unless there is a threat to national security. If the FAA were to pull their legs that far, then the event can be moved elsewhere. Remember, these negative actions are being directed from a current President that sees NO advantage of GA, NO advantage of having events as such, and definitely sees GA as a threat to your own airspace. There is truly serious issues that are NOT right in Washington..............

  9. #9
    Quote Originally Posted by JoesPiper View Post
    EAA does not have to pay for anything, they are a private entity. There are volunteer controllers. If Whitman field is open, which it will be, and that tower is staffed by the FAA, that tower must exhibit its duties.
    The issue, I think, is the level of staffing. The 2-3 controllers per shift normally at OSH is way inadequate for the amount of activity during Airventure. If you read EAA's news release, you see the FAA is balking to paying the overtime, travel, and per-diem for the controllers that normally augment the permanent staff.

    The FAA ate the expenses for these additional controllers in past years, but in a budget-constrained environment, they're apparently no longer willing to do so. All it takes is one Congressman saying, "The FAA is closing the airport in my home district, but they pay millions of dollars* to support a private air show for a bunch of fat cats, drinking champagne in air-conditioned chalets!"

    Ron Wanttaja

    * You know it's not millions of dollars. I know it's not millions of dollars. But that's precisely what a Congresscritter would say.

  10. #10

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    I have to go along with Ron on this one. It is a private gathering. It is a 10 million dollar+ gate gathering. Sure it brings in 110 million in an economic bump to Oshkosh but not to the feds who have to support the busiest airport on the planet. There is major training to work in an environment like AV. So to have FAA request to be compensated for the extra staff and expenses seems fair - sadly not on the budget radar for EAA/AV.
    jim

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