October 4, 2013

Dear NBAA Member,

As you likely know, on October 1, a government-wide shutdown went into effect, leading to work furloughs for hundreds of thousands of federal employees, and impacting services provided by nearly all government agencies.

While the shutdown has not immediately impacted basic aviation safety services, it has had a particularly intense impact on many other aspects of business aviation, because our industry is more regulated than other industries.

With this letter, I’m detailing what NBAA is doing about the situation, and sounding a Call to Action for the people in business aviation to support the Association’s efforts.

NBAA has been highlighting the shutdown’s effect on business aviation with policymakers in Washington, so that they understand its dire and immediate consequences. As just one part of making our case as clear and meaningful as possible, we have repeatedly emphasized that general aviation planes and parts can’t be produced, financed, bought or sold without the written approval of the federal government, which has to register each and every aircraft in the FAA’s Aircraft Registry.

According to the FAA, 10,000 aircraft registrations expire each month. So, by shutting down the registry, the government is effectively grounding much of the America’s general aviation industry, along with the potential operations of thousands of aircraft crucial to the functioning of our economy. In the long term, the shutdown will have additional, grave consequences for workers, the economy and our national infrastructure.

Earlier today, I sent an open letter to President Obama and Congressional Leaders, urging the Administration and Congress to expeditiously find a way forward to end the shutdown, or at a minimum conduct a re-evaluation of the criteria for excepted employees.

NBAA will continue to sound the alarm about the situation with Washington decision-makers, but we need your help to fully ensure our industry’s voice is heard. Here’s how you can help:
NBAA has created a Government Shutdown resource page on the association’s web site [now closed], which provides background information about the current situation, plus:

  • A prepared letter you can send to your elected officials, through NBAA’s online “Contact Congress” resource. You can use this tool to alert your House and Senate lawmakers about the situation, and its dire consequences for business aviation.
  • An online form where you can share your shutdown experiences with NBAA, so that we can get the best possible understanding of the breadth and depth of the shutdown’s impact on our Members, and share the information with lawmakers.
  • Resources from government and NBAA, providing details about the shutdown, explaining what NBAA is doing to take action on this issue and more.

What the situation boils down to is this: The shutdown of the federal government threatens our industry with the elimination of jobs, closure of companies and the loss of millions in economic activity with every day it continues.

I hope you will utilize NBAA’s advocacy web resources to contact your members of Congress today, and to share your shutdown-impact stories, so that we can highlight the importance of business aviation in America today, and illustrate the grim consequences it has for our industry.

This shutdown, and its consequences, must be fully understood by all elected officeholders in Washington. Thank you in advance for taking a moment to make your voice heard today.

Ed Bolen
President and CEO
National Business Aviation Association