FAA Reauthorization is a hot topic at this time, and the bill prepared has two great features that allow NBAA to offer it strong support. One great aspect is its 5 year duration, giving us a period of time that we can enjoy relief from many ongoing budgetary challenges. The other, greater feature is actually something that the bill does not have, which is ATC privatization. We - all of us in business aviation - have stood up together to make sure that privatizing air traffic control would not move forward, ensuring that access and representation of our sector remains unharmed. Thank you all, and I hope you all feel a sense of pride in that accomplishment.
Santa Monica Airport is an ongoing battle of which we remain dedicated to a front line role. The reality is that the airport is not scheduled to close as many say, but only that its federal obligations end in 2028; there are no firm plans to close the airfield at this time. NBAA will remain actively involved to represent the aviation community in hopes of allowing Santa Monica Airport to serve their great city with the economic and public safety contributions that it delivers.
Workforce challenges remain the biggest obstacle facing our industry today. All roles in aviation are aching for more personnel in the roles of pilots, mechanics, instructors, operations/dispatch and more. NBAA has developed great initiatives with scholarships, mentorships and internships that will empower those who are either already stepping into aviation but could still use some coaxing into the corporate/business sector, or to inspire others from outside of the industry as we aim to widen the pipeline of entrants. Specifically in the Western Region, the forming of regular events to interact with young people of all ages, in addition to veteran outreach, are actively under construction or underway.
Though we can facilitate these forward steps, none of it can be done without everyone’s help. We need all hands on deck, offering a variety of resources to build up local inventory of scholarships, mentorships and internships so that the young people that in our schools today can be on your aircraft and in your airports, and offices tomorrow.
To learn more, volunteer on workforce initiatives, or for any assistance as an NBAA member, please email Phil Derner at firstname.lastname@example.org.