The National Air Transportation Association (NATA) is seeking input from its members in response to a legislative proposal put forward by the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) and other aviation stakeholders to the ranking members of the House Committee on Transportation & Infrastructure and the Aviation Subcommittee, calling for the establishment and implementation of transient parking ramps at public-use airports.
While AOPA and its co-signatories believe individual owner-operators of aircraft should not be required to pay fees to a private business on a public-use airport when “their products and services are not used, needed, or requested,” NATA responded that it “does not believe the issue is universal to all publicly funded airports, nor does it merit an unfunded federal mandate.”
NATA argued that a requirement to establish publicly funded ramps could alter the priorities of AIP funding and thereby delay critical infrastructure improvements at a particular airport. In addition, the question of who would manage and maintain such areas remains unanswered. Traditionally, the burden of collecting revenues, providing public access and facilities, along with security and insurance has fallen under the responsibility of FBOs which factor those costs into their business models and lease negotiations with the airports.
Instead, NATA supports a collaborative approach at individual airports where the needs of all stakeholders including users, businesses, and the airports themselves are taken into account.