The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) wrapped up a series of Air Charter and Industry Town Hall Meetings last week with stops in Portland and Seattle. The town halls were among more than a half-dozen such events the association has held throughout the country as it highlighted a number of issues confronting the charter industry.
The most recent events were held on August 23 at Global Aviation’s Portland-Hillsboro Airport facility and on August 24 at Seattle King County International Airport. Bill Deere, NATA executive v-p of government and external affairs, led discussions on subjects such as illegal charter, correct application of transportation taxes to aircraft management services, FBO pricing and FAA reauthorization.
“By holding town halls across the country, we develop a better understanding of the needs and priorities of the entire aviation business community,” Deere said, pointing to a regulatory issue surrounding the Pilatus PC-12 that NATA was able to help resolve. The association first heard about that situation at the town hall meetings, he said. The meetings also have hosted guest speakers. In Seattle, Doug Wilson, president and founder of FBO Partners, provided perspective on FBO pricing.
“These meetings have also been invaluable to our efforts on Capitol Hill,” Deere added. NATA used the meetings as an opportunity to energize its membership to continue to keep pressure on Congress to oppose the proposal to carve the nation’s air traffic control system out of the FAA. “The ATC privatization debate resumes in full force this September, making it imperative that aviation businesses continue to engage with their elected representatives using resources like NATA’s Legislative Action Center,” Deere said.
Along with the events in the Pacific Northwest, NATA on August 3 held a town hall at Alliance Aviation Services in Fort Worth, Texas. The association also held events earlier this year in Chicago; Palm Beach, Florida; Greer, South Carolina; and Long Beach, California.