Tenterfield Airport NSW: Council Seeks Sell-Off

Article supplied by AOPA

The future of Tenterfield Airport in New South Wales is at risk with news that the Tenterfield Shire Council is seeking a sell off of the community airport asset, with non-aviation property developers said to be circling.

Council CEO Daryl Buckingham, who has been in the job for less than 12 months, is said to have given clear instructions to the Council’s Development Manager Bruce Mills to scope out all saleable assets with the community airport at the top of the list.

Located 6km north west of the township of Tenterfield, the community airport was purchased by Council in 1967 and has been an invaluable base of operations for local aerial agriculture, aerial firefighting and emergency services.  The airfield is also used for local business and recreational private aviation.  The grass runway is approx 1300m in length.“Tenterfield is just another example in a growing list of airport sites that are facing the the real threat of sell-off, in response to spiraling local council debts nationwide – this is a crisis in the making, ” Benjamin Morgan, AOPA Australia CEO. “Such outcomes nationwide are serving to further displace aviation through the introduction of uncontrolled commercial fees and charges, undermining the viability of aviation services throughout regional Australia, “When privatised owners realise there is little money to be made from charging user fees, the very next thing they do is start redeveloping the sites for non-aviation use, “AOPA Australia is reaching out to the Councillors and Management of the Tenterfield Shire Council seeking an opportunity to discuss this important situation, “Our association is encouraging the Council to reject any proposal to sell-off this invaluable community asset, highlighting the important and ongoing contribution the airfield makes to the safety, security and amenity of the local ratepayers and region,” he said.

Pilot Medical Reform Proposal 2022

pilot medical reform AOPA

Article supplied by AOPA

The Australian General Aviation Alliance (AGAA) is seeking the introduction of new self-declaration pilot medical certification standard (detailed in Table 1 of this document) for Recreational Pilot License and Private Pilot License holders, along with key reforms to existing Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA) Class 2 Basic and Class 2 certification standards to safely unlock general aviation participation and growth.

CLICK TO DOWNLOAD A COPY OF THE PROPOSAL

The reforms that AGAA is seeking, have been implemented by aviation safety regulators in the United States of America (US) and the United Kingdom (UK), and across the past five (5) years have proven to be a safe method of pilot medical certification.  Both regulators based their reforms on the use of conditional private vehicle motor car license medical standard, with options for both self-declaration and General Practitioner assessment certification.

In the US, the FAA BasicMed pilot medical certification is widely regarded as one of the most successful aviation regulatory reforms in modern history, with over 66,000 pilots now accessing flying through this standard, with no demonstrated negative impact on aviation safety.  The UK reforms mirror the success of those delivered in the US and have opened up their local general aviation industry to growth.

In summary, recreational/private pilots in both the US and UK who use either a self-declaration or General Practitioner assessed medical certification standards;

  1. must meet the medical fitness requirements of the ‘conditional’ private motor vehicle license standard
  2. can fly both single and multi-engine aircraft
  3. can fly aircraft weighing up to 5700 kg
  4. can participate in both VFR and IFR operations
  5. can carry up to a maximum of six (6) passengers
  6. can participate in aerobatic flight

The US now has in excess of 66,000 private pilots accessing aviation through BasicMed, with pilots participating in VFR and IFR operations in aircraft ranging between recreational light sport, experimental/amateur-built, general aviation certified singles and twins, helicopters, gyrocopters, warbirds and more.

AGAA regards both the introduction of a new self-declaration pilot medical certification standard and the reform of the CASA Basic Class 2 standard as a powerful gateway for the industry to sustain itself, reducing the regulatory burdens and costs currently imposed on the private general aviation sectors.  Such reform would make aviation more accessible nationwide, with strong benefits to pilots and aviation users throughout regional Australia, driving growth back into Australia’s ailing general aviation sectors.

Importantly, the introduction of a new self-declaration pilot medical certification standard and a reformed Basic Class 2 medical certification by CASA would deliver safe deregulation that is in alignment with the Minister’s Statement of Expectations and the Government’s broader deregulation agenda.

Sincerely,

MR BENJAMIN MORGAN
Chairman
 – Australian General Aviation Alliance
Chief Executive – Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association of Australia

C/O Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association of Australia
Hangar 120, 15 Stinson Crescent, Bankstown Airport, NSW 2200, Australia.

Email:  ben.morgan@aopa.com.au
Mobile:  0415 577 724

Airservices Australia seeks to decommission Bankstown & Camden airport beacons

decommission bankstown airport beacons

Article supplied by AOPA

Airservices is seeking industry feedback to understand if there is any operational requirement or impact on removal for the Bankstown and Camden aerodrome beacons before a decision for its decommissioning can be made.Changes to MOS 139 have removed the mandatory requirement for an Aerodrome Beacon and the evolution of other aerodrome lighting and the expansion of GNSS navigation capabilities across all levels of the industry means that that the historical need for an aerodrome beacon has changed considerably.Airservices Australia is proposing to decommission both the Bankstown and Camden Aerodrome Beacons (ABN) and remove them from operational service. Airservices has completed an internal risk assessment, consistent with our Safety Management System (SMS), for the decommissioning of the Bankstown and Camden Airport aerodrome beacons and identified a negligable impact on industry.

FEEDBACK SURVEY LINK:Airservices invites you to provide feedback using the survey form link provided below:https://engage.airservicesaustralia.com/…/bankstowncamd…

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AOPA Australia | Your Freedom to Fly

No increase in threshold monetary value for major development plans at privatised airports

Article supplied by AOPA Australia. The Department of Infrastructure, Transport and Regional Development and Communications has announced that it has scrapped its plan to increase the threshold monetary value for Major Development Plans from $25 to $35million at privatised airports, following strong objections from AOPA Australia and other industry bodies.

Under the Airports Act 1996, all leased federal airports, excluding Mount Isa and Tennant Creek, are required to develop and submit Major Development Plans (MDP) for airport developments if they exceed the monetary threshold of $25million.  An increase to $35million would enable airport property developers to undertake larger non-aviation projects without Ministerial or Departmental oversight.

“AOPA Australia would like to sincerely thank the Deputy Prime Minister, The Hon Barnaby Joyce MP, and the Department of Infrastructure, on this important announcement, it is an important win for common-sense and for aviation, “ Benjamin Morgan, Chief Executive AOPA Australia.

“The proposal to increase the monetary value from $25 to $35million, would have served to lower essential oversight, opening up the system to further gaming by privatised airport leaseholder operators,

“It’s a fact that privatised airports are being run by insatiable property developers who are prioritising non-aviation expansion, at the expense and to the detriment of the aviation infrastructure and stakeholder access,

“Small, medium and large aviation businesses alike, including the airlines themselves, have been thrust into a situation where they are being priced out of airports, and forced to accept aviation property leases and access/user charges that are unsustainable.

“National superannuation funds and billion-dollar property development corporations do not invest in small to medium sized general aviation.  They invest in property development, and the recent sale of Jandakot Airport for $1billion underscores, that our national aviation industry is under attack,

“Without question, privatised airport leaseholders hold unique unregulated monopoly powers, that deny the aviation industry it’s right of access and threaten our nations aviation infrastructure.” he said.

Media contact:

BENJAMIN MORGAN
Chief Executive AOPA Australia
Mobile:  0415 577 724
Email:  ben.morgan@aopa.com.au

STATEMENT FROM THE DEPARTMENT OF INFRASTRUCTURE, 29TH SEPTEMBER 2021

Good afternoon,

We write further to our email of 30 August 2021 about the monetary threshold amount (the threshold) for airport major development plans (MDPs).

Under the subsection 89(10) of the Airports Act 1996 (the Act), there is an opportunity to increase the threshold for MDPs before each third anniversary of the subsection commencing. The subsection commenced on 28 September 2018.

Recent economic analysis conducted by the Department, and consultation with airports and the aviation sector, indicated greater interest in broader reform to the MDP process and associated triggers due to complexities that warrant further consideration. These include:

  • reviewing the development ‘triggers’ that require a MDP, to ensure the triggers are pragmatic, appropriate and fit-for-purpose;
  • improving consultation arrangements, to better align with state and territory planning frameworks; and
  • streamlining Commonwealth consideration and approval processes, particularly for low-impact developments.

Taking all stakeholder feedback into consideration, the threshold will remain at $25 million in line with subsection 89(9) of the Act while the Department investigates opportunities to reform and streamline overarching MDP arrangements. This may include moving towards a performance-based approach, where the assessment and approval process is more directly linked to the expected impacts of particular developments.

The Department is currently reviewing the Airports Act 1996 and regulations, to cut red tape, streamline Commonwealth processes and modernise airport planning regulations. The Department looks forward to working closely with airports and the aviation sector in progressing these important reforms, and support the sector as Australia recovers from the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic.

Kind regards,

Aviation Reform section
aviationreform@infrastructure.gov.au
GPO Box 594 Canberra, ACT 2601

Full article: https://aopa.com.au/plans-scrapped-no-increase-in-threshold-monetary-value-for-major-development-plans-at-privatised-airports/

AOPA Australia Submission: Removal of anti-competitive regulatory restrictions on flight training

Article: AOPA Australia The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association of Australia this past week met with CASA CEO Ms Pip Spence, calling for the removal of anti-competitive regulatory restrictions, that are driving decline in general aviation flight training.

Article: AOPA Australia The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association of Australia this past week met with CASA CEO Ms Pip Spence, calling for the removal of anti-competitive regulatory restrictions, that are driving decline in general aviation flight training.

The AOPA Australia Submission is based on the COAG’s Competition Principles Agreement that have not been applied to aviation regulatory development since 2003.  AOPA Australia asserts that anti-competitive aviation regulations have been created since 2003 that have restricted safe competitive growth of small businesses by removing safe competitive regulations consistent to the Chicago Convention Annexes as implemented by the USA’s Federal Aviation Regulations. NZ has adopted the FARs and NZ small aviation and manufacturing are much healthier than Australia’s small civil aviation sectors.

Click to download a PDF Copy of the AOPA Australia Submission

Article written by Benjamin Morgan – AOPA Australia