Oct. 28, 2015

NBAA recently represented the business aviation industry in the kickoff meeting of a new U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) working group that focuses on general aviation.

NBAA was represented by Senior Manager of Security and Facilitation Sarah Wolf, as well as representatives from several Member Companies, who provided feedback from the front lines on how industry and CBP can increase collaboration. They joined officials from the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) and several CBP officers representing general aviation and traveler entry programs at a meeting held at CBP’s Washington, DC, headquarters.

Attendees exchanged ideas on a wide range of topics, including improving communication between the industry and the agency, establishing more consistency from port to port and streamlining procedures for operators.

“CBP is clearly committed to working with industry on an ongoing basis and wants to hear directly from operators on the issues that are most important to them,” Wolf said. “This working group should be an ideal way to maintain an ongoing dialogue between business aviation interests and CBP as we collaborate on mutually beneficial initiatives.”

The next step includes determining how to expand the working group. Additional members are expected to include representatives from industry groups, and the working group could be expanded to include executives from specific companies or facilities, such as airports.

CBP Commissioner R. Gil Kerlikowske announced plans to form the working group this summer, and NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen met with Kerlikowske shortly after that announcement to exchange ideas, such as how to improve the facilitation of N-registered business aircraft returning to the U.S. They also discussed other opportunities for NBAA and CBP to collaborate.

Kerlikowske is one of several speakers at NBAA’s Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA2015) Opening General Session on Tuesday, Nov. 17. Read more about Kerlikowske and his speaking role at NBAA2015.