2003 Press Releases

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NBAA Seeks Federal Court's Permission to Participate in the Appeal of Naples' Stage 2 Ban

Contact: Cassandra Bosco

Washington, DC, October 27, 2003 – The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) on October 21 filed papers in a Federal appeals court in Washington asking the court to allow NBAA to participate in the appeal involving the Stage 2 ban at Naples Municipal Airport. Joining that request with NBAA was the General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA).

As a recipient of Federal funding, Naples Airport Authority is required under Federal law and a contractual grant assurance to make the airport available for public use on reasonable terms and without unjust discrimination. The FAA investigated Naples' Stage 2 ban (enforcement of which began March 1, 2002), and NBAA participated in that investigation, arguing that the ban is unlawful. On August 25, 2003, the FAA issued a decision finding the ban unreasonable and thus a violation of Federal law and the grant assurance. As a result, the FAA's decision states that the agency will refuse to approve Federal grant assistance for the airport as long as the ban remains in place and enforced.

In September, the Naples Airport Authority filed an appeal of that decision with the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit.

In its October 21 filing with that court, NBAA noted that the potential impact of FAA's Naples decision extends beyond Naples itself. The FAA's Naples investigation, said NBAA, "was closely watched by many observers across the country, including other airport proprietors who, if Naples' effort had succeeded, would have been encouraged to enact similar Stage 2 bans themselves, thus accelerating the very balkanization of our national air transportation system that the underlying Federal legislative scheme was intended to prevent." For that reason, NBAA told the court, NBAA has "been involved from the outset in the effort to challenge Naples' Stage 2 ban," both before and after the ban was enacted, and should be permitted to participate in the court appeal as well.

If the court grants NBAA's request, NBAA would be permitted to file a brief with the court, likely next year, asking the court to uphold the FAA's order.

For more information, contact NBAA Manager, Airports & Ground Infrastructure Jeff Gilley at (202) 737-4477 or jgilley@nbaa.org, or visit the NBAA web site at www.nbaa.org/baaap.

NBAA represents the aviation interests of more than 7,500 companies that own or operate general aviation aircraft as an aid to the conduct of their business, or are involved with business aviation. NBAA Member Companies earn annual revenues approaching $5 trillion — a number that is about half the gross domestic product — and employ more than 19 million people worldwide. The NBAA Annual Meeting & Convention is the world's largest display of civil aviation products and services.

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