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Bolen: Chicago Event Highlighted Importance of Gaining ‘Outside the Beltway’ Perspectives

Jan. 29, 2014

Emphasizing the continuing importance of "getting outside the [Washington, DC] Beltway, and speaking directly with state and local aviation groups around the country," NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen traveled to Chicago, IL on Jan. 28 to discuss industry opportunities and concerns with members of the Chicago Area Business Aviation Association (CABAA).

"Business aviation is about the ability to reach all markets, at all times, in order to connect with companies and clients where they are," Bolen noted. "Chicago is obviously a very important city in the United States, not only as a major commercial airline hub, but also as an area with a very active business aviation community.”

Among the topics discussed at the presentation included the ongoing threat of aviation user fees, questions about how federal excise taxes apply to business aircraft activity, and concerns over implementation of international aircraft emissions policies, including the highly controversial European Union Emissions Trading Scheme (EU-ETS). CABAA members also raised questions about the attempted implementation of mandatory obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) screening for some pilots by the FAA.

Bolen also spoke of NBAA’s ongoing efforts to promote a positive image for business aviation to policymakers and opinion leaders, including through the No Plane, No Gain advocacy campaign.

"In order to really understand and appreciate how policies from Washington impact operators at the grassroots level, NBAA reaches out not only through our annual conferences, seminars and conventions – but also by traveling across the country to gather information and experiences from local operators," Bolen added.

CABAA President Ed Forst thanked Bolen for spending time with the association’s members. "The CABAA membership enjoys Ed's visit every year – to hear from him personally about the future of programs that affect us, and to see what his 'crystal ball' is forecasting," Forst said. "Additionally, the question-and-answer session following his presentation is always very insightful."

Bolen's visit to Chicago is the latest example of NBAA's participation in regional events across the country in order to share information about the association’s work to support the industry’s interests, and to detail the importance of business aviation to citizens, companies and communities across the U.S.

In 2013, NBAA representatives participated in numerous gatherings across the country – including events in South Dakota, Alaska, Ohio, Nevada and New Mexico – to keep local and state leaders informed major policy discussions affecting the industry, and hear from local leaders on issues impacting their regions of the country. Read more about local and regional events in which NBAA representatives recently took part.

Additional events, featuring senior NBAA officials and other key personnel, are planned throughout 2014.