Tag: FAA

Conference Committee to Consider Language to Protect Model Aircraft

The political process of creating legislation is more of an art than a science, and the fact that H.R. 658 does not include an exemption for model aviation (MA) does not necessarily mean there wasn’t support for such an amendment. Quite honestly there is a significant amount of backing in the House for our issues, and numerous Representatives have come forward with pledges of support and offers to assist in protecting MA from onerous regulation.

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House approves (H.R. 658)

No April Fools…

Yesterday, 4/1, the House voted 223-196 to approve the FAA Reauthorization and Reform Act (H.R. 658). The bill would reauthorize the FAA’s operations and programs for four years, at an overall funding level of $59.7 billion. The House bill essentially rolls back FAA spending authorization to 2008 levels. The House bill does not include an amendment mirroring the one included in S. 223 which exempts modeling activity conducted in accordance with a community-based set of guidelines from regulation.

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Our Message is Being Heard

Over the past two weeks tens of thousands of AMA members and model aviation supporters have written over 80,000 individual letters to members of Congress expressing their concern regarding FAA’s intent to regulate model aircraft, and there are clear signs that our message is being heard. Scores of Congressmen have responded to their constituents with letters of understanding and support. Below are excerpts from a few of the letters sent from Capitol Hill. Though an amendment protecting model aviation has not yet been introduced into H.R. 658, we now have several supporters in the House and at this point the legislative process is taking its course. Last Thursday the FAA Reauthorization and Reform Act was sent to the House Committee on the Judiciary and is expected to return to the floor next week. Unfortunately, there are no guarantees, but at this point we are seeing positive movement in the House of Representatives and we are optimistic that Congress will act to protect model aviation from unnecessary and potentially debilitating federal regulation.

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House Bill Does Not Yet Protect Model Aviation

Both the Senate and the House have prepared Bills that address the FAA’s Re-Authorization. S.223 has already passed the Senate and it contains an amendment to exempt model aviation. Click here to view the amendment. H.R. 658 is on the House floor awaiting passage and does NOT yet have a similar amendment. We are actively meeting with Representatives on the Hill and working to build support for such an amendment. While we have had many promising meetings, we still need your help.

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Congressional Awareness Campaign Initiated

On February 17, the US Senate passed S. 223, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Air Transportation Modernization and Safety Improvement Act, sponsored by Senator Jay Rockefeller of West Virginia. Additional help in shepherding the bill came from Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison of Texas, and Senator James Inhofe of Oklahoma was instrumental in including an amendment to the Bill that provides an exemption for aeromodeling activity “conducted in accordance with a community-based set of safety guidelines within the programming of a nationwide community-based organization.” We would like to express our sincere gratitude and appreciation to Senators Rockefeller, Inhofe and Hutchison for their support and efforts on our behalf.

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