House Aviation Subcommittee Razzes LASP

U.S. Representative Vernon Ehlers (R-Mich.) didn't mince words when assessing the TSA's Large Aircraft Security Program (LASP). After a meeting with the TSA on March 10th, the congressman said, "This is a prime example of a stupid rule. Simply put, the threat does not warrant this level of regulation." Under provisions of LASP, passengers on all aircraft with maximum gross weights exceeding 12,500 pounds would be subject to most of the same TSA security regulations that are in place for airline passengers today. The proposal has drawn fire from all general aviation groups as a "one size fits all" solution that is unworkable and would unnecessarily hobble operations. Ehlers' sentiments were echoed-if not as succinctly-by other members of Congress from both sides of the aisle. Representative Jerry Costello (D-Ill.), chairman of the House aviation subcommittee, said, "I believe this proposed rule is a solution in search of a problem and we will be monitoring it very closely. If the rule is formalized in its current state, we will seek legislative action [to defeat it]." Representative Leonard Boswell (D-Iowa) said, "This proposal is shortsighted and does not take into account the many uses of GA operations across the country. The pilot-in-command knows who is on the airplane and by no means would take anyone who may be inappropriate. This is a totally different situation from a pilot-in-command on a commercial flight who may have several hundred passengers on board."