WASHINGTON, DC – On Thursday the Alliance for Aviation Across America (AAAA) along with other major aviation organizations, announced that the House General Aviation Caucus has reached a milestone of 200 Members of Congress, including U.S. Rep. Richard E. Neal. This represents significant support in Congress for general aviation, and helps to raise awareness about the $150 billion in economic activity and 1.2 million American jobs that are supported by this industry.
“As a member of the Aviation Caucus in the U.S. Congress, I recognize how important this industry has become in America today. On a local level, aviation is an economic engine that produces millions of dollars of growth and creates good paying jobs. I will continue to support legislation that benefits the aviation community on a national level, and here at home in western Massachusetts,” said Neal.
“I am glad to see that the level of support at the Congressional level has been elevated for this important industry. This Caucus, coupled with our state Aviation Caucus chaired by Rep. Don Humason, shows the value that general aviation has in our economy,” said Jeff Daley, city advancement officer for the City of Westfield.
“In Westfield, we know firsthand the economic impact general aviation has and locally, Mayor Knapik has made Westfield Barnes Regional Airport a focus of his administration,” said Daley. “I am proud of the work and dedication that goes on at our airport and, as a partner on many projects, the FAA and federal government continue to play an important role in the growth of Barnes.”
“We thank all the Members of Congress who have joined the General Aviation Caucus, and whose participation in advocate in the Caucus helps to raise awareness about the importance of general aviation as an economic engine and connector to life-saving resources,” said Selena Shilad, executive director of the AAAA.
“We would also like to give special thanks to Congressman Sam Graves and Congressman John Barrow, co-chairs of the House General Aviation Caucus, for leading the efforts to build the caucus, and for helping to lend a voice to the industry and the communities that rely on it,” stated Craig L. Fuller, president of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. “This level of bipartisan agreement is nearly unheard of in the modern political climate, and it is a true testament to the importance of general aviation.”
“We thank the members of the House General Aviation Caucus and their counterparts in the Senate for their support of this crucial industry, which helps to support more than a million jobs, cultivates economic opportunity and bolsters communities’ access to live-saving services,” stated Ed Bolen, president and CEO of the National Business Aviation Association. “With the support of this broad and bipartisan coalition of lawmakers, we are optimistic that debates over policies impacting this vital industry will be well informed.”
“Across the country, local airports serve as an integral part of our communities, supporting millions of jobs and connecting communities to essential services.” said Henry Ogrodzinski, president of the National Association of State Aviation Officials. “The General Aviation Caucus has done great work in giving a voice to the industry and these communities, and helping to make sure all Congressional lawmakers understand the importance of issues related to general aviation and local airports.”
“The General Aviation Caucus serves a very important function to help educate Members of Congress and their staff about the vital role of general aviation in our country,” said Thomas L. Hendricks, president and CEO of the National Air Transportation Association. “As one of the biggest caucuses of its kind, we are encouraged by the level of support and participation it has received.”
“I am encouraged by the steady growth of the General Aviation Caucus and its continuing commitment to educate Congress on the many benefits of General Aviation, while keeping watch to prevent overly burdensome regulations and laws which could negatively affect the lifesaving services that the helicopter community provides for the greater good of society,” said Matthew Zuccaro, President of Helicopter Association International.