The FAA has released a “fact sheet” that aims at clearing up what they call a “significant amount of misinformed rhetoric” about the potential impact of the proposal on the U.S. general aviation (GA) community.
The entire fact sheet, found here, is quite interesting, especially when you read between the lines. When the same administration who has done a “heckuva job” on Katrina, Iraq, price fixing by Big Oil and the outsourcing of millions of U.S. jobs tries to do likewise with FAA funding reauthorization, is it any surprise there are holes in this fact sheet big enough to fly an A380 through?
First of all, in the intro, they really REALLY want you to believe you've been in the loop helping The Decider decide what is the best way to fund FAA:
The FAA strongly believes it is in the national interest to have a strong GA community. In developing our cost-based financing proposal, we balanced numerous interests, includingHello? Everyone from AOPA to NBAA to AAAA are shouting loudly, but are we supposed to believe FAA is actually listening? Has anyone you know been contacted by this administration to ask how they feel about Bush's user fee/tax scheme?
feedback from the GA community, in an attempt to avoid overly burdening any one segment of the industry.
Now if this administration had any kind of track record doing anything right, I might be willing to listen to the Decider's gibberish on FAA funding. But they screw up anything they touch, and when they get caught in each scandal du jour, they lie about who know what and when they knew it, fire a few key people, and rearrange the deck chairs on the Titanic. So when they SAY we won't have to pay a dime to fly a GA plane through Class Bravo airspace, do they actually expect us to believe them?
And if you really need to take another hit between the eyes, there's this, from the fact sheet:
The proposal would reduce the tax burden on airlines and the passengers who fly them.Oh, so Average Joe and Jane and their 1.9 kids have been paying my way when I fly? Damn, all along I foolishly thought it was ME who was subsidizing my flying. Silly pilot.
This is less a tax break for the airlines than the elimination of a subsidy to general aviation.Under the current system, a portion of the taxes that a middle-class family pays to go on summer vacation or to visit the relatives for the holidays is subsidizing the use of the system by corporate jets and private individuals who are wealthy enough to own their own aircraft.
You really owe it to yourself to go read the entire FAA Fact Sheet here. It is a long and winding road through la la land, friends, a document that creates more questions then it answers.