The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) thanked Sens. James Inhofe (R-OK) and Tammy Duckworth (D-IL) for co-sponsoring bipartisan legislation introduced this week, which contains a number of provisions aimed at bolstering the nation’s general aviation community.
For example, the Securing and Revitalizing Aviation (SARA) Act of 2018 (S.3270) calls for the creation of an Aircraft Pilot Education Program that would allow high school students to get a head start on their flying careers by taking aviation-related courses for credit.
The bill also includes reforms to existing Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) regulations to ease the shortage of qualified designated pilot examiners (DPE) needed for initial and recurrent pilot training.
“We commend Senators Inhofe and Duckworth for sponsoring this important legislation, which will greatly benefit the general aviation community, and help preserve America’s world-leading position in all sectors of the industry,” said NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen.
“We look forward to working with them and the other co-sponsors of this bill in gaining prompt Senate passage.”
Additional provisions would enhance existing due process protections for pilots; extend limited liability coverage for FAA designees performing agency duties, but who are not covered under immunities for government employees, as well as for pilots performing volunteer missions; and grant the National Transportation Safety Board (NTSB) the authority to review denials of airman certificates by the FAA.
The proposed legislation builds upon Sen. Inhofe’s original Pilots Bill of Rights, signed into law in 2012, and incorporates language from his subsequent Pilots Bill of Rights 2 legislation, introduced in 2014, and Forward-Looking Investment in General Aviation, Hangars, and Tarmacs (FLIGHT) Act of 2017.
The bill also includes provisions from the Senate FAA reauthorization measure (S.1405) now under consideration in Congress.
“Sen. Inhofe is a long-time champion of general aviation, and a key member of the Senate General Aviation Caucus,” Bolen continued. “These provisions carry direct benefits for GA operators, and address the ongoing shortage of pilots and other personnel throughout the broader aviation community.”
The bill was introduced July 25 to coincide with the Experimental Aircraft Association’s (EAA) annual AirVenture event taking place in Oshkosh, WI through July 29.