President Obama’s FY 2011 federal budget does not include user fees for general aviation. The issue of user fees has dominated the Capitol Hill agendas of all the major aviation trade associations for several years. NBAA Pres Ed Bolen cautions that the battle against user fees is not completely over and that they could reappear in a future budget. “Our industry must continue to make its voice heard on this and other issues,” he says. “The general aviation community supports full funding for FAA and modernization of the nation’s aviation system. But our industry has been united in opposing calls for user fees, which require a large bureaucracy to manage and would impose a hidden administrative burden on the many small and midsize businesses that rely on an airplane to succeed.” Bolen notes that with fuel taxes, users pay the tax at the pump, the government collects the revenue and the system serves as an effective proxy for the cost airplanes impose on the system.
NBAA has released a guide to setting up an SMS. Twelve Steps to an Effective Safety Management System—A Review of the Fundamentals outlines the basic steps necessary to prepare a comprehensive SMS. A formalized SMS allows any aircraft operator to identify and mitigate potential safety risks. The guide is also designed to help operators comply with new ICAO SMS requirements. The Intl Standard for Business Aircraft Operations (IS-BAO) incorporates a full SMS scalable to operations of all sizes that conform to private or commercial regulatory structures. NBAA’s SMS guide may be downloaded at no charge at www.nbaa.org.
Embraer has selected FlightSafety Intl (FSI) as the training provider for the Legacy 450 and 500. The partnership also extends to the Legacy 600/650 and the Lineage 1000, as well as Embraer’s family of commercial jets. FSI and Embraer will work together to develop new training programs, update existing courses and determine the timing and location of additional flight simulators, devices and equipment needed to support Embraer operators. The company now serves Embraer aircraft operators at 6 learning centers in the US and Europe, using a total of 19 full flight simulators and other advanced training devices.
Embraer has named Clay Lacy Aviation (CLA) VNY as the authorized service center for the Phenom 100 and 300 in southern California. CLA has an FAA Class III and IV repair station with 5 large hangars for inspections, scheduled and unscheduled maintenance, paint touchups and interior shop services. The Phenom 100 has been operating in North America since Dec 2008, and the Phenom 300, which was certified at the end of 2009, is also flying in the region. A total of 64 Phenom jets are currently registered with FAA.
Cessna has established its 5th Citation mobile service unit (MSU) at Sheltair FLL. Crews will be based locally and are equipped with full-size service trucks with tooling to perform a variety of Citation diagnostic and maintenance functions, including AOG support. Cessna’s other MSUs are based in Arizona, California, North Carolina and Texas. In 2009 the in-service trucks made 541 service calls, traveled more than 70,000 miles and performed 310 unscheduled and 231 scheduled maintenance jobs.
Dassault has appointed Hawker Pacific to provide product support for Falcon 7X operators in Asia. Through its Singapore service center and soon-to-be-launched joint venture, Shanghai Hawker Pacific, the company will also help Dassault launch the 7X in China later this year. Hawker Pacific will provide full technical support for the aircraft. Falcon 7X deliveries are planned soon for India, China, Malaysia and Singapore. The facility is the first outside the US and Europe to be recognized as an accredited Dassault Falcon Jet authorized service center and as a Falcon 7X service center.
Idaho Western Aircraft at BOI (Boise ID) is now a Piaggio Avanti authorized service center offering complete Piaggio warranty service. Western, part of the Greenwich AeroGroup, is a full service FBO and FAA-certified repair station, offering airframe and powerplant maintenance, avionics and interior refurbishment, aircraft sales, charter and management.
John Bingham is the new pres & CEO of Piaggio America. He was previously exec vp and chief marketing officer. Bingham is a former exec vp with Cirrus Design.
Gulfstream Aerospace has named Dan Nale vp of advanced aircraft programs, a new department. Nale started at Gulfstream in 1985 as a structural analysis engineer and later managed the Gulfstream G100, G150, G200 and G250 programs. His former duties as vp of midcabin programs have been assigned to Stan Dixon. Formerly Gulfstream’s director of mid-cabin programs, Dixon led the G150 program.
Duncan Aviation has appointed Lee Bowes southwest regional mgr. Bowes began his career with Duncan Aviation in 1999 as a marketing specialist.
Columbia Helicopters has named Nancy Lematta chairman. She assumes the role held by her late husband, Wes Lematta, who founded Columbia Helicopters in 1957. Crownair Aviation has appointed Bill Rohde dir of maintenance. Most recently he was a field service representative for Bombardier Business Aircraft.
Luis Planas has been named vp of quality at Dassault Falcon’s LIT (Little Rock AR) facility. Before joining Dassault, Planas was responsible for quality operations at HondaJet.
Nick Silverio, retired president and owner of Aero Facilities, died on Feb 5. He was 87. A noted pilot and businessman, Silverio served in WWII and the Korean War, leaving the US Air Force as a captain. He moved to Miami in 1953 from Wright Patterson AFB where he had served as a procurement officer and pilot flying the B25, C47, C45, P51 and T6. He was also qualified as an aircraft maintenance officer and A&P. He held management positions with Aerodex, Aircraft Plating and Aircraft Casting. Silverio left Aerodex in Mar 1972 to manage Aero Facilities at MIA. He bought Aero Facilities and later sold the firm to Page Avjet. In 1986 he received the “Man of the Year” award from Silver Wings, a national pilot organization. Silverio was a contributor to Pro Pilot as well as a member of Quiet Birdman and numerous aviation professional organizations.
Eminent aviation photographer Howard Levy died on Jan 29 at age 88. Levy took his first airplane photograph at Floyd Bennett Field in Brooklyn NY at the age of 15 and sold his first picture a year later. His work appeared in dozens of publications including Smithsonian magazine, Janes, AOPA Pilot, Private Pilot, Kitplanes, Professional Pilot and Air Progress. At one point in his career Levy worked full-time for Pro Pilot. Among the thousands of photos he took were many pictures of one-of-a-kind aircraft. An Intl Symposium of Photographers Lifetime Achievement Award recipient, Levy was a founding member of the American Aviation Historical Society and the Aviation/ Space Writers Assn.