AMA recently met with the Office of Management and Budget (OMB), an agency within the White House that assists the President in meeting policy, budget, management, and regulatory objectives, to discuss the importance of Advisory Circular (AC) 91-57C and its release. Although it was expected to be released sometime in late 2020, the AC has been delayed at the OMB because of President Biden’s regulatory freeze.
The AC contains the safety requirements that recreational users are to follow, details a process for community-based organization (CBO) recognition, information regarding the knowledge and safety test, and operating requirements for night flying in controlled airspace.
After AC 91-57C is released, AMA members should have a path to resume night operations in controlled airspace. Additionally, AMA will apply to become an officially recognized CBO. The requirements to become a CBO, as listed in Section 349 Exception for Recreational Aircraft, are as follows:
Community-Based Organization Defined:. In this section, the term “community-based organization” means a membership-based association entity that:
- is described in section 501(c)(3) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986;
- is exempt from tax under section 501(a) of the Internal Revenue Code of 1986;
- the mission of which is demonstrably the furtherance of model aviation;
- provides a comprehensive set of safety guidelines for all aspects of model aviation addressing the assembly and operation of model aircraft and that emphasize safe aeromodeling operations within the National Airspace System and the protection and safety of individuals and property on the ground, and may provide a comprehensive set of safety rules and programming for the operation of unmanned aircraft that have the advanced flight capabilities enabling active, sustained, and controlled navigation of the aircraft beyond visual line of sight of the operator;
- provides programming and support for any local charter organizations, affiliates, or clubs; and
- provides assistance and support in the development and operation of locally designated model aircraft flying sites.
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