August 23, 2013
Local voices in the nation’s business aviation community are utilizing an opportune moment – the annual congressional August “recess” period, when lawmakers return from Washington to their home states and districts – to communicate the value of general aviation (GA), including business aviation, with columns in their local newspapers.
Since Aug. 11, at least three newspapers – in Idaho, South Dakota and New Jersey – have published opinion pieces by operators testifying as to how business aviation is vital to their success.
This month, Tom Boyer, of Treasure Valley Coffee in Idaho; Dan Noteboom, of Noteboom Implement Company in South Dakota; and Don Baldwin, of General Pallet in New Jersey, all submitted opinion pieces, published in their local papers, which took strong stands in support of business aviation.
“The purchase of a small airplane for my business has helped tremendously, making it possible for me to get from point to point quickly, allowing me to meet with my employees quickly, easily transport tools and demonstration materials to any one of the 120 or more communities around the state that are close to an airport,” Boyer wrote in the Aug. 11 issue of MagicValley.com, the online service of the Times-News newspaper in Twin Falls, ID.
“The added value for businesses [of general aviation], according to state figures, creates an estimated economic impact of $429 million every year and supports more than 4,000 jobs in Idaho,” he wrote. “My story is not unique; countless other small business owners, especially in rural areas, rely on general aviation as a tool to increase overall productivity and to do what they otherwise would not be able to do.”
Baldwin, in the Aug. 19 Times of Trenton newspaper in New Jersey, said his company’s aircraft was crucial to business.
“My business takes me in many directions, but mostly in the eastern part of the country, and the small plane, which I pilot myself, allows me to reach multiple destinations in a single day. Whether it’s visiting with a supplier or meeting a new prospect, our small plane gets me exactly where I need to be, when I need to be there,” he wrote. “For a company that prides itself on personal response and customer service, this is immensely important.”
In a submission published in the Aug. 20, edition of the Capital Journal in Pierre, SD, Noteboom told readers that he frequently travels between his John Deere tractor dealerships in southeastern South Dakota and Sioux Falls, where many of the business service companies he needs are located, and – given the distances – a company airplane is the only practical way to travel to and among those facilities in the shortest amount of time.
“Many small businesses throughout the state like my own depend on general aviation to increase efficiency, productivity, and in many cases help with specialized functions that would not otherwise be possible, such as crop protection and surveying, and maintaining power lines and pipelines. All told, across our state, the GA industry has an economic impact of $303 million each year,” he told readers.