NATA Sides With FAA on Airport Community Ruling

Jim Coyne, president of the National Air Transportation Association agrees with the FAA's stance that residential through-the-fence (RTTF) arrangements are bad for publicly funded airports. He said, "Due to the intrinsic nature of residential properties, as compared with commercial properties, RTTF agreements limit the flexibility of airport sponsors to expand according to the needs of the community. NATA believes that the FAA has made an overwhelming case for prohibiting new RTTF agreements and supports its proposal." Under the proposal Coyne refers to, some 75 existing airport communities with RTTF arrangements will be able to retain their agreements. Meanwhile, the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association said the FAA should "not necessarily close the door to future requests but rather establish specific criteria for new RTTF access and not ban it entirely." The FAA has maintained that fly-in communities with so called "hangar homes" are a threat to operations, safety, security and future expansion of airports. The ruling does not, however, affect fly-in communities on privately owned airports that do not receive federal funds.

Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.

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