2016 Aviation Business Conference | Gathering in Washington During Interesting Times

June 20, 2016

NATA members attending the association’s second annual Aviation Business Conference are arriving in Washington, D.C. at an interesting time. Congress will still be in session but can already see on its horizon July 15th, the date it will adjourn for the two national political conventions and its annual summer recess. Returning shortly after Labor Day, Congress will meet for only a few short weeks before adjourning to campaign in advance of the November 8th general election.

Not by coincidence, July 15th is also the date of the expiration of the FAA’s current authorization. On the House side, Chairman Shuster’s (R-PA) proposal to create an air traffic corporation continues to languish due to objections from other congressional committees, conservative Republicans, and virtually the entire House Democratic Caucus. NATA continues to voice its strong objections to the corporation concept at any and all venues that provide us the opportunity to discuss the dangers it poses to general aviation. Like presidential candidates, NATA has been on the road, updating the aviation business community in Florida, Wisconsin, Illinois, South Carolina, Indiana and Texas on the status of the Shuster proposal. We also continue to work the issue at the national level, educating the press and appearing at public policy forums here in Washington, D.C., to rebut the outrageous claims of the airline interests campaigning for ATC corporatization.

I am also pleased to report that in April the United States Senate took a different, more hopeful path than the House, approving by a vote of 95-3 a bipartisan FAA bill that does not include provisions to create an ATC corporation. The legislation instead embraces NATA’s long-stated belief that Congress should build upon its previous work and continue to improve the consistency of FAA decisions across its offices and regions, streamline the FAA certification process to better reflect today’s pace of innovation, and assist the agency in operating as efficiently as possible.

The Senate’s action now puts the impetus for further action in the hands of House Transportation Committee Chairman Shuster to decide whether or not to continue to press forward on his proposal to create a user fee-funded, air traffic control corporation, accept the Senate proposal, or simply extend the FAA’s authorization beyond its current expiration on July 15th. Senator John Thune (R-SD), Chairman of the Senate Commerce Committee, who steered the legislation through the Senate, has publically expressed his hope there will be no more extensions and that the House will give serious consideration to the bipartisan approach taken by the Senate.

This puts NATA members in Washington, D.C. this June smack dab in the middle of it all. Our annual fly-in on June 9th will once again feature key aviation policymakers sharing their perspectives on the FAA reauthorization debate. We are also fortunate that once again Tom Hendricks and the leaders of the other general aviation associations will brief you in advance of your trip to the Capitol Building. And, of course, we will also gather informally that evening on Capitol Hill with aviation policymakers and their staffs for our annual industry reception.

However, the Aviation Business Conference is more than about politics. For that reason, we will be joined by TSA Administrator Peter Neffenger, who will discuss the security challenges facing our nation. FAA Associate Administrator for Aviation Safety Peggy Gilligan will be on hand to answer your questions about the FAA’s regulatory agenda. Finally, the conference will be packed with sessions providing insights on the state of the industry and the latest in effective business and safety practices.

So bring some good walking shoes (we can never guarantee the operating state of our subway), your questions and your insights. We look forward to seeing you in our nation’s capital!

By Bill Deere, Senior Vice President for Government and External Affairs (republished from Q2 2016 Aviation Business Journal)


NATA 75: An Industry Voice Is More Important Than Ever

December 28, 2015

 

As we launch into our anniversary year, reading the excellent history of the association written by Paul Seidenman and David J. Spanovich (page 18) underscores just how important it is for aviation businesses to have a voice to represent them in the public policy arena. As the article demonstrates, NATA’s birth was directly linked to the future of civil aviation, when the association’s founders had the vision to join together and intervene at a critical juncture, not letting the military in effect—take over—American aviation. In fact, the article is replete with examples, large and small, of how the association’s intervention made a difference in supporting aviation businesses’ contin­ued growth in this vital, and uniquely American, part of our economy.

It is easy to understand the advantages of membership when viewed from a purely business perspective. Many NATA members, for example, take advantage of the association’s industry leading workers’ compensa­tion insurance program or perhaps its Safety 1st training. However, the need for a public policy presence is not something that is always readily apparent nor easily quantified.

Perhaps because of our history, NATA members see that need. In our recent membership survey, advocacy was rated as one of the most important aspects of membership. It is also borne out by the fact that when the call for help goes out to aviation businesses, NATA members respond.

Looking ahead to 2016 we, like our founders, continue to see challenges and opportunities for aviation busi­nesses. On our immediate horizon is the upcoming FAA reauthorization bill. While events in 2015, the leadership crisis that resulted in a new Speaker of the House, Paul Ryan, and the difficul­ties of financing a multi-year surface transportation bill, slowed down the FAA bill in Congress—make no mis­take about it—the airlines still want the keys to the air traffic control system.

In early December, Airlines for America (the trade group representing the major carriers) and the CEOs of the nation’s six major airlines were in Washington, D.C., talking to lawmak­ers about their desire to create an independent, user-fee funded air traffic control organization. Don’t think they are serious? When the world’s largest airline, Delta, announced it was leav­ing the trade group in a disagreement over this and other policies the airlines are pursuing, the remaining members waived the association’s required de­parture notice allowing Delta to leave immediately.

The idea of privatizing air traffic control has been one pursued by others as well, some frustrated by the pace of modernization, others concerned the congressional budget process has bro­ken down to the point where funding for the agency may no longer be able to keep up with the future needs of the system.

While NATA agrees the FAA could certainly stand the injection of more private sector practices, we view the unknowns associated with corporati­zation as simply too great to risk. Can such a proposal be safely implemented in a system many times larger and far more complex than any other in the world? Will its implementation set back the cause of modernization rather than enhance it? And what happens to general aviation, a uniquely American user not really a large factor elsewhere in the world? Will new costs and fees in effect deny your businesses and cus­tomers access to airports and airways necessary to your operating a viable business?

While a huge concern, I don’t want to leave you with the impression this is the sole issue confronting avia­tion businesses. We are still working to unwind a 2012 IRS opinion that concluded that aircraft management fees are “transportation” and therefore management service providers should be assessing the 7.5 percent commer­cial ticket tax on amounts paid for those services. We are also working as part of a broad national coalition to bring certainty to investment policy by making permanent bonus depreciation and Section 179 expensing. Finally, the NATA regulatory team is working across a myriad of issues, before the FAA, the TSA, and Customs, among others, looking to bring common-sense and your real world perspective to the issues under consideration by the exec­utive branch.

Our issues are not always defen­sive. Our committee members were instrumental in developing a positive agenda for the FAA reauthorization bill. In fact one agenda item, requiring the investigative arm of Congress, the Government Accountability Office, to conduct a study of diversions of non-commercial jet fuel tax revenues to the Highway Trust Fund, was just incorporated into the recently enacted surface transportation bill. We are also particularly proud of the ongoing effort by NATA and AAAE members to identify and address the issues that divide and can unite airports and their tenants.

So as Tom Hendricks says, our future is bright and getting brighter by the day. As we move into what could be a watershed year in aviation, stay involved, and stay engaged. In the end, you are aviation businesses best advocates!

By Bill Deere, Senior Vice President for Government and External Affairs


A Confession about Community

April 17, 2013

I moved to the Denver, Colorado area about a year and a half ago, and I have a confession to make. I joined the Colorado Aviation Business Association (CABA) pretty early on in my stint in Colorado and even sit on the legislative committee, but I only just recently attended my first big CABA meeting. Why did I pass on the last two holiday parties and several other events? It snowed – a lot. The roads were bad. I traveled for work that week and my flight was late the night before. I was sick. I broke my foot and spent six months on crutches. Basically, I had one excuse after another (although that crutch thing seemed kind of legit), because the truth was rather embarrassing for a full-grown adult to admit. Joining a new group like that – even a group of like-minded aviation professionals – felt a bit like going to a new junior high school. What if I don’t know anyone in this new community? It might be awkward. I might be bored. It might be a waste of my time.

When I worked for NATA and lived in the Washington, DC area, my sense of “community” was never in question. From the outside looking in, one might think the aviation community in DC is forced. We were “required” to spend quite a bit of time together at seemingly endless receptions, dinners, meetings, and other functions, but the people who make up that community – my trade association friends and colleagues, our wonderful association members, and even to a varying degree the regulators with whom I worked – are such incredible people that I felt blessed to be part of such a great community. Since I left DC, life has taken me to Kentucky, Kansas, and now Colorado and my incredible Beltway community seemed irreplaceable. I never even tried to be part of the aviation communities of those other states. They were just bases from which I parked my car at the airport and flew to visit a client somewhere else.

I attend most of the “big” national aviation trade conferences with a soft spot in my heart for NATA events. For me, NATA functions are like class reunions, and I am always excited to visit with other attendees and hear what’s new in our industry. In fact, I’m currently getting revved up to attend NATA’s Aviation Business and Legislative Conference next week in DC. But I always assumed the local events were unnecessary – a drain on my already limited time at home with my family.

Let me share with you what I learned at that CABA meeting last week: Our local aviation community is essential to our professional development and even sense of well-being. I cheated a bit at this event and found a client of mine to visit with at the beginning of the evening, but soon found my way to colleagues who overlap with my DC community and yes – met new people. I came away from the event energized for the future of my own business, excited about the opportunities to participate more fully with CABA, and amazed at the power of shared passion.

Are you active with your state or regional aviation business organization? The national trade associations increasingly rely on these state and regional groups as essential pipelines of state and regional issues and concerns. Aside from the obvious networking opportunities these local groups provide, I learned they can bridge the gap between the national events most of us attend and give us that injection of energy only found in large groups of people that have a zealous devotion to the same industry.

NATA’s new Aviation Business and Legislative Conference is being held next week in conjunction with the association’s committee meetings. I am looking forward to seeing my DC community, catching up on important issues, and experiencing the enthusiasm of my colleagues. Are you in need of a little community? It’s not too late to register for the Aviation Business and Legislative Conference and committee meetings!

Submitted by Guest Blogger Lindsey C. McFarren

President of McFarren Aviation Consulting

www.mcfarrenaviation.com


What does snow have to do with spring?

February 1, 2013

As I sit and write this morning, snow is falling over the Washington, DC metropolitan area, snarling traffic and generally making everyone’s Friday morning difficult (except for the kids who don’t have to go to school!). Of course, sitting here in my warm office as a member of the staff here at NATA I find it hard to complain. It was just a few years ago that on a morning like this I was out on the ramp at the airport pulling aircraft out of their hangar or clearing snow off a fuel truck. It was back during those times that I got my first introduction to NATA and the Safety 1st training seminars. My employer sent me to the NATA Line Service Supervisor Training (LSST) in Chicago. The first seminar marked the moment my job became a career; the opportunity to talk with other attendees and meet with industry experts broadened my horizon beyond just the FBO and airport where I worked.

Now, we are coming up on one of my favorite events of the year, our NATA Safety 1st Spring Training Week in Las Vegas, NV. NATA Safety 1st Spring Training Week is Safety 1st’s premier training event, combining the LSST Seminar with the Safety 1st Trainer Seminar, Environmental Compliance Seminar and FBO Success Seminar. I love this event because of the opportunity it provides to interact with line service supervisors, general managers, training coordinators and compliance specialists from aviation facilities around the country. The discussions that occur during the seminars and even between sessions never fail to teach me something I did not know about our industry. Of particular interest to me this year are our Environmental Compliance Seminar and the FBO Success Seminar.

The Environmental Compliance Seminar, led by industry environmental compliance expert George Gamble of 2G Environmental, will give supervisors, managers and owners of aviation facilities the basics they need to know to comply with existing environmental regulations. George provides a solid understanding of what your company needs to do to comply with regulations such as Spill Prevention, Control and Countermeasures (SPCC), Stormwater Pollution Prevention Plans, underground storage tank and universal waste. Most aviation facility managers spend a lot of time working to make their businesses successful. George and the Environmental Compliance Seminar will help you make sure that environmental compliance does not become an obstacle to that success.

One of the great things about NATA Safety 1st Spring Training Week is the wide variety of learning opportunities it provides. Take the FBO Success Seminar for example. Taught by John Enticknap of Aviation Business Strategies and Ron Jackson of the Jackson Group, this seminar provides tips and techniques for maximizing profits and reducing expenses, building productivity and improving your company’s bottom line. John and Ron’s coaching technique creates lively discussions that lead to a better understanding of the management practices that will help your business be successful.

While I mention those two seminars in particular, our LSST and Safety 1st Trainer seminars, as always, provide the foundation for productive and safe line service operations. I firmly believe in the value that NATA Safety 1st Spring Training Week can provide to your company and employees because I have experienced it firsthand.

I look forward to seeing you March 11-14 in Las Vegas for NATA Safety 1st Spring Training Week and I promise, no snow!

For more information, or to register, please visit NATA 2013 Safety 1st Spring Training Week webpage.


A Changing FBO Business Model: You Can’t Give It Away

August 25, 2011

Submitted by: John L. Enticknap & Ron R. Jackson, Aviation Business Strategies Group

For many years, the FBO Business Model in the United States has been fairly simple and straight forward: markup fuel to cover all the operational business expenses; the greater the margin, the better the profit.

When fuel prices were fairly stable and the old inefficient heavy iron aircraft were commonly seen on ramps, this worked out pretty well.

But as singer-songwriter Bob Dylan so poignantly penned, “The Times They Are a-Changin’.”

From the last quarter of 2008 we’ve seen some real changes in our industry including political bashing and a prolonged recession. As we struggled through 2009, we saw the ‘average’ FBO experiencing a 20 to 25 percent drop in business sales with some losing more than 50 percent of their fuel sales. In 2010 there was some recovery with an encouraging increase in charter activity and the resulting increased fuel sales.

Now in 2011, we are struggling with ever higher fuel costs and a general business malaise. Just as we are writing this article, we experienced more unfortunate politics conveying a negative image for business aviation. And we are seeing the restart of the continued consolidation of the FBO industry; some failures; and most of all, much continued pressure on fuel margins.

The cost of fuel peeked in the first week of May and has dropped .40 cents to early July; now it’s on the way back up. Just about the time we sell the high priced inventory in our fuel farms and look for some stability, the higher prices are again reality.

Changes in operator fuel purchasing habits

Over the last few years we have seen a strong push from corporate customers towards a utilized alternate fuel purchasing strategy, rather than the traditional retail fuel purchase. Of course, the full retail fuel purchase has always been a myth – purchasers of Jet A fuel expect and get discounts off the posted price.

The trend over the last 15 years, especially within the last few, is to pre-negotiate fuel purchasing with many of the contract fuel sellers prior to arriving at your FBO. Calling ahead for the best discount available or changing plans to get the best overall operating costs are all tactics for reduced fuel costs and gallons purchased. This is savvy cost control for corporate operators.

Add to this the fact that corporate aircraft operators are getting more sophisticated in their flight planning:

  • Using fuel tankering models
  • Pre-established fueling points
  • Better ATC routing for weather and flight planning to minimize fuel costs
  • The purchase of more fuel-efficient aircraft

FBO profit misconceptions

Today’s FBO business model has not changed much over the last 30 years. It is still highly dependent on the retail fuel sale. The successful FBOs look for the fuel sales – retail, contract, or other – to essentially support the entire FBO operation.

But do all the aircraft that taxi onto an FBO ramp purchase fuel? NO THEY DON’T! Yet the cost of doing business goes on, including exposing your FBO to potential insurance claims should the customer’s aircraft get mishandled. This has given rise to the Ramp Fee which is still a controversial subject in some aircraft operator’s minds.

Again, there is this misconception by many in the aviation business that FBOs are super-high profitable organizations and are “ripping off” the flying public. This, of course, is highly exaggerated.

There has even been a string of emails lately that draws attention to the continuing misunderstanding of the FBO business. These emails contend FBOs are making more than $4.30 per gallon gross margins and, after fuel cost and lease expenses, are earning $334,000 per week before labor and other expenses.

In reality, margins are running more in the $1 to $1.50 range while insurance costs alone can run $1,000 per day. So the operator who comes onto the FBO’s ramp and doesn’t contribute to the income stream is not cost free to the FBO> To be sure, the FBO business is still a good business to be in. If an FBO chain or individual location can make 10 to 15 percent EBIDTA, then it is a very good business. In perspective, look at the oil companies who may be earning in the nine percent range; on the other hand, a general consumer company like Coke is running 25 percent plus.

Changes in the wind

However, today’s FBO model in the U.S. is destined for change. As mentioned, fuel margins are being squeezed from both ends. At one end is the higher cost of fuel which drives up the base price. At the other end is the more savvy aircraft operator trying to drive down the posted price. In the middle is your margin, being squeezed like a lemon in a juice press.

So how do we make lemonade out of the tart extracted juice? Here are a few observations to ponder.

Having operated FBOs in both the U.S. and in the Middle East, we are very familiar with the European FBO Business model where fuel is not part of the income equation. Rather, fixed base operators in this part of the world depend on revenue generated solely by fees associated with providing various services common to an FBO operation:

  • Marshalling
  • Handling
  • Parking
  • Ramp
  • Ramp transportation
  • Over the road transportation
  • Baggage handling
  • GPU
  • Lavatory service
  • Customs/visa
  • A handling fee for collecting navigation fees
  • A handling fee for collecting landing and over-flight fees
  • Lounge fees
  • Catering

We are not suggesting that you should follow this model, at least in its entirety.  However, as margins get squeezed, you need to get creative in shoring up your bottom line by creating other streams of income.

Don’t give it away!

Our advice is:     DON’T GIVE IT AWAY!

In operating Mercury Air Centers, we looked at every aspect of our business to see where we could recoup some of our expenses.

If a customer doesn’t buy fuel, or at least doesn’t buy a minimum quantity for the type of aircraft being flown, why not charge a facility fee for use of the ramp, including labor for safely parking and towing the aircraft and repositioning for passenger loading?

If aircraft operators want a significant discount off the posted price, why not charge for taking out the trash, cleaning the lavatory, servicing the galley with ice and coffee or hooking up the APU?

If a fuel broker drives a hard bargain, why not charge for the courtesy vehicle or the newspapers? (This often entails a requested set for the pilots and a set for the passengers.)

If, during the course of a transaction, your fuel margin is significantly compromised in any way, why not consider a facility fee for that clean restroom which is kept tidy by paid staff? Or how about the nicely furnished and well equipped conference room; or pilot and customer lounges that often include the coffee and cookie bar that is kept well stocked throughout the day?

Perhaps you don’t need or want to charge for everything you do, but you need to analyze your various income streams and make sure you are not giving your services away. Your business deserves to make a profit – and that is not a bad word! Your business should not subsidize corporate aircraft operating companies, or subsidize your airport sponsor. If you do that, your business will not survive and you’ll lose your investment. Profit allows for growth, sustainability and the continuation of your business.

Here is a short checklist to consider moving forward:

  • Stabilize your selling prices and your margins. Don’t be all over the place. Customers will notice and your employees with be confused.
  • Use a consistent discount program that is easy to understand for the FBO and your customer – and stick to it!
  • Don’t discount your hangars. Make sure you know the true cost of your real estate.
  • Don’t give away all your other services unless you get the ‘right’ fuel sale that protects your margins. More fuel sold equals more ‘free’ services. No fuel sale; customer must contribute to your revenue.

No one can predict the future of the FBO business, but it is possible high fuel prices are here to stay which, out of necessity, will cause change to the way we do business. It’s how we prepare ourselves for this change that’s important. By developing our own consistent approach to our FBO business model, we can make ends meet before someone else decides to move the ends for us.

Let us know your thoughts – email us at jenticknap@bellsouth.net or thejacksongroup@earthlink.net. Ron and John developed NATA’s acclaimed FBO Success Seminar Series curriculum. Click here to learn more about the upcoming FBO Success Seminar on November 8-10, 2011 in Atlanta

This blog post originally appeared on ACUKWIKAlert.com, The FBO Connection.

To visit or return to NATA’s site, visit www.nata.aero.


Making The Right Call

March 21, 2011

By NATA Director, Regulatory Affairs – Michael France

I have always thought that one of the most difficult jobs to have would be that of sports official, umpire or referee. Whether at the professional, college, high school or even Little League level, the demand to make the right call every time is enormous! Add to that the fact that sports fans are notorious for adhering to the philosophy that any call against their favorite team is a “bad call,” and officials are in a no-win situation. I mention this because I think that sometimes the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is in the same position on certain issues — no matter what decision they issue, there is going to be a group that is unhappy. Such may be the case with the FAA’s new interim policy on residential through-the-fence (RTTF) agreements.

The FAA’s interim policy on RTTF agreements basically allows existing RTTF agreements to continue, albeit under closer scrutiny, while prohibiting any new agreements from being signed. Additionally, the interim agreement goes a step further in proposing that the agency review the policy again in 2014, after receiving input from “any person who would be interested in a specific approval of new residential through-the-fence access at a federally-obligated airport.” Despite the fact that the FAA has allowed existing RTTF agreements to continue and has vowed to reevaluate its position in the near future, I am quite certain that there will be a group that is dissatisfied with the policy because it does not allow airport sponsors the sole discretion in determining the appropriateness of RTTF agreements.

NATA believes that the FAA has made the right call. First, nothing in this policy prevents “hangar-homes” from being developed at airports. What this policy does require is a decision from airport sponsors about what role they envision for their airport. Sponsors that wish to be a part of the National Airspace System and receive federal funds for development must accept, under this policy, certain restrictions on their authority to pursue RTTF agreements. This restriction is not a new idea. Sponsors have always been required to agree to the federal grant assurances, which set specific limits on how they operate their airports for the purposes of ensuring that the federal investment pays dividends to all airport users and the public in general. Airport sponsors not wanting these restrictions are free not to accept federal funds and to operate the airport in any manner they see fit (after satisfying the agreements for any funds they received in the past).

So, the sole question becomes, Is encouraging residential development around airports in the best interest of the long-term utility of publicly funded airports and their users? Allowing RTTF agreements at public-use airports will act as an encouragement for residential development near those airports as sponsors look to increase revenue, especially in this time of tight local and municipal budgets. Some argue that since pilots and aviation enthusiasts would most likely be the residents of this new development the typical concerns with residential development near airports would be negated. However, pilots and aviation enthusiasts would be as likely as any other resident to oppose airport expansion or modification plans if they negatively affected their property values or their enjoyment of their property

NATA believes that it is vital to our membership and our national aviation system that airports remain flexible enough to evolve and expand as needed to meet future demand. We believe the FAA has made the right call on this issue by allowing the agreements that have already been signed to continue but prohibiting new RTTF agreements at federally funded airports.

Visit www.nata.aero.


Maintenance Makes It Work

January 29, 2011

 We have all heard people tell us that “if it’s not broken, don’t fix it.” Why, after all, would you mess with something that is seemingly going or doing well?

While this may hold merit in certain situations in life, we also know that if it can go wrong, it eventually will unless we keep checks and balances in place. Your car may run fine now, but failing to have the oil changed or to top off its fluids may find your trusty steed stranded on the side of the road.

In the aviation maintenance world, there is very little room for what-can-or-might-happen. Aviation maintenance technicians (AMTs) work countless hours to ensure that the world’s general aviation fleet is safe to fly. Repair stations work over-time to ensure that before returning an aircraft to service it meets or exceeds the most stringent safety requirements. It is important that we recognize the tremendous work these individuals and organizations perform.

In support of the maintenance community, here are two things of which to be aware:

– NATA recently submitted comments on the inspector authorization (IA) “Actively Engaged” proposed policy language to the Department of Transportation

– The NATA Aviation Maintenance Technician Employer Recognition Program application deadline was extended by a week to February 4. This new award program was established by NATA to show the association’s continued support to the advancement of training within the aviation maintenance community.

IAs, Important for the Industry

Last week, NATA submitted comments regarding the Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) “actively engaged” policy clarification as it pertains to IAs.

The policy, which is intended to help the agency’s aviation safety inspectors (ASIs) better determine whether someone is “actively engaged,” has initiated a sizeable number of comments from the maintenance community. While it is a policy change, many in the industry appeared to have viewed it as a new rule. This assumption is not without merit as the agency’s regulations and its employees’ interpretations of them do not always correspond. Empower an inspector by leaving the policy too open ended, and you give him too much freedom; write the policy too restrictively, and you take too much of it away. There is something to be said for both, depending on what interpretation benefits us most and hurts us the least.

Many aviation mechanics share a valid concern that they risk losing their IA certification if ASIs are given the tools they need to deny their renewal requests. In the proposed policy preamble, the FAA points to a 1998 memo that sought to clarify “actively engaged” as being the same as “full time” (35 hours by Department of Labor standards). We sincerely hope that the FAA will continue to respect the hard work that goes into reaching IA status and the people and organizations that rely on the expertise of those who attained it.

For those seeking IA training, AskBob.aero has put together a great list of renewal opportunities in 2011:

http://askbob.aero/content/ia-renewal-2011

NATA’s AMT Employer Award Deadline Now Set for February 4

It’s not too late for your organization to participate in the 2011 NATA Aviation Maintenance Technician (AMT) Employer Recognition Program.

In response to many requests, we have extended this award program’s application deadline to Friday, February 4. Participating in the program is easy; simply download and complete the short application form and submit it to NATA via fax or e-mail.

We have received a great deal of interest in the program and applications continue to come in. Your commitment to the training of your employees is a vital component in maintaining the excellent safety standards we enjoy in our industry. The NATA Aviation Maintenance Technician Employer Recognition Program awards aviation maintenance organizations that encourage and support AMT training.

This award program is open to any full-time aircraft, components maintenance, Part 91, 121, 125, 127, 129, 133, 135, 137; 141 145 or 147 entity that conducts aviation maintenance. Award recipient selection is based on the percentage of AMTs employed (directly or indirectly) by a maintenance organization that participates in qualified training events.

For a detailed program description, go to www.nata.aero/AMTaward.

The application and list of qualified training/technicians may be submitted via fax to 703-845-8176 or completed and submitted online by e-mail to dvandelaar@nata.aero (preferred). Please ensure that you provide valid contact information so we may notify you with up-to-date program information.

By Dennis van de Laar, NATA Manager of Regulatory Affairs

Visit or return to NATA site: www.nata.aero