Washington, DC – Today, national aviation organizations recognized South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley for declaring August 13-18 “Aviation Week.” The proclamation highlights the vital role that all aviation, including general aviation, plays in supporting businesses, farms, emergency response, and the overall economy. Aviation in South Carolina provides thousands of jobs and billions of dollars in economic activity, with general aviation alone contributing $417 million in economic activity. “The Alliance thanks Governor Haley for her support of aviation and specifically, general aviation, in the state of South Carolina,” said Selena Shilad, Executive Director of the Alliance for Aviation Across America. “General aviation and local airports are invaluable for business and job growth, acting as a lifeline for small communities throughout the state.”
“Throughout South Carolina, 54 public-use airports support more than 3,000 general aviation aircraft and 6,600 pilots,” stated Craig L. Fuller, President of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA). “These airports and aircraft expand local commerce, help facilitate medical care and disaster relief and connect communities of South Carolina with the rest of the country. We appreciate Governor Haley’s contribution to generating public awareness of the importance of the general aviation industry.”
“I am happy to see Governor Haley’s Proclamation recognizing the importance of general aviation in South Carolina,” stated Ed Bolen, President and CEO of the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA). “Across the country, the general aviation industry generates $150 billion every year and supports 1.2 million jobs, including more than 65,000 jobs in South Carolina,” “Our thanks to Governor Haley for issuing this proclamation and recognizing the benefits of business aviation for local communities in South Carolina and across the United States.”
“America’s network of community and public-use airports supports local jobs and economic opportunities in towns throughout the country,” stated Henry Ogrodzinski, President of the National Association of State Aviation Officials (NASAO). “Fifty-four public-use airports in the state of South Carolina are used daily by businesses, manufacturers, and emergency responders to allow them access anywhere in state within hours, literally creating jobs and helping to save lives. We welcome Governor Haley’s signature to this Proclamation and look forward to working with South Carolina Aeronautics Commission Program Manager James Stephens on issues concerning airports and the general aviation industry as a whole.”
James K. Coyne, President and CEO of the National Air Transport Association (NATA) said, “in addition to their vast economic contribution, general aviation aircraft are fundamental in supporting the efforts of police, firefighters, emergency medical responders, search and rescue teams, non-profit organizations and natural disaster relief crews, which help to ensure public safety. We thank Governor Haley for her effort to highlight the importance of this critical lifeline.”
“Helicopters, as well as other small aircraft, are essential tools in business and public safety in South Carolina,” said Matt Zuccaro, President of the Helicopter Association International (HAI). “The speed and versatility of helicopters make them particularly valuable in supporting business as well as saving lives. We appreciate Governor Haley for continuing to recognize the vital importance of general aviation in the state of South Carolina.”
Formed in 2007, the Alliance for Aviation Across America is a non-profit, non-partisan coalition of over 5,900 individuals representing businesses, agricultural groups, FBO’s, small airports, elected officials, charitable organizations, and leading business and aviation groups that support the interest of the general aviation community across various public policy issues.