FAA Streamlines COAs for UAS Test Sites

The Federal Aviation Administration announced last week that it has made it simpler for the six unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) test sites to conduct research by giving them “blanket” authorizations to fly public aircraft operations throughout the National Airspace System at or below 200 feet.

The FAA expects this improved access for the test sites will provide more opportunities for research that may help the agency integrate UAS into the nation’s airspace more quickly and easily.

The new Certificates of Waiver or Authorization (COAs) allow small UAS (under 55 lbs.) operated by the test sites to fly up to 200 feet above ground level anywhere in the country except restricted airspace and areas close to airports and heliports. Operators must fly during daytime Visual Flight Rules conditions and within visual line of sight of the pilot. The new authorizations also let the test sites fly various types of UAS under a single COA, making it easier for them to conduct research missions. Previously, the FAA required authorization for each type of UAS the operators wanted to fly.


Bryan_Hal 2015edit.jpg Hal Bryan, an experienced pilot who created and built much of the Experimental Aircraft Association’s social media and online community presence, has been promoted to Senior Editor of EAA Publications.

In his new role, Bryan will use his extensive aviation knowledge to tell the stories of EAA members and the many segments of the EAA family. His writing will be featured in EAA Sport Aviation magazine beginning with the June 2015 issue, as well as in EAA’s other publications and outlets in the future.

“Hal is a great aviation storyteller, as his long experience and knowledge within the flying community give him unique insights, not only about the remarkable aircraft within the EAA family, but a superb understanding of the people who have an amazing passion for flight,” said Jim Busha, EAA’s director of publications. “In addition, his background and following within our digital communications are a real plus as the publishing world expands beyond the printed product to include digital and online formats.”

ACC Announces Staff Changes

ACC.jpg The Airport Consultants Council (ACC) announced recently that Colleen Flood (pictured at right) has been promoted to Director of Marketing and Member Services. Flood's promotion was effective as of May 11, 2015. In this capacity, she will take on greater responsibility in driving the council's marketing and membership recruitment initiatives in addition to meeting planning, office administration and database management.

“Colleen has been a tremendous asset to ACC since coming aboard in March, 2012," said ACC President T.J. Schulz. "She has done a fantastic job in implementing improvements to ACC's membership services and enhancing overall operations and efficiencies at ACC. In her new capacity we look forward to her continued efforts to advance ACC's marketing initiatives and member services."

acc 2edit.jpg ACC also announced the hiring of Kristen Scott as Assistant of Membership and Administration. Scott joined ACC on May 1, 2015, bringing with her a communications background along with association and meetings experience. Scott has worked for the National Association of Real Estate Investment Trusts (NAREIT) for two summers and received her Bachelor of Arts degree in Communications and Rhetoric from the University of Pittsburgh in June of 2014.

IDOT Announces Illinois “2015 Airport of the Year” Recipients

Seven Illinois airports are winners of the “2015 Airport of the Year” award by the Illinois Department of Transportation (IDOT). For a wide variety of categories, Decatur Airport, DuPage Airport, Marshall County Airport, Mount Vernon Airport, Northwest Community Airport, Poplar Grove Airport, and Quincy Regional Airport, were all recognized on May 14, at the Illinois Aviation Conference, held in Rockford.

These highly-regarded airports were acknowledged for their accomplishments throughout the year, including an outstanding partnership with the State of Illinois and the commitment to customer safety and satisfaction.

The annual awards are based on criteria established by senior staff at IDOT’s Division of Aeronautics. Among the award considerations are cooperation and coordination with the Division of Aeronautics by airport management and staff, the facility safety record, promotion of seminars and aviation events and maintenance of the facility.
“It is our way of recognizing the tremendous dedication to the aviation community exhibited by airports and heliports throughout Illinois,” said IDOT Interim Aeronautics Director Steven M. Young. “We wish sincere congratulations to all of this year’s recipients.”

Nevada Governor Proclaims June General Aviation Appreciation Month

Gov Proc 2015.jpg Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval has proclaimed June as General Aviation Appreciation Month. The Governor recognized that general aviation and community airports play a critical role in economic development and the well-being of the state’s citizens.

The Governor cited that many communities depend heavily on airports and general aviation for the continued flow of commerce and tourism. Nevada is home to 49 public-use airports which serve 6,811 pilots and 2,246 general aviation aircraft. In the proclamation, the Governor recognized that GA is vital to many businesses in Nevada and that the state has an economic output of $275 million annually, supporting 3,384 jobs.

The proclamation also recognizes the contributions that various aviation organizations make to the state, including the Nevada Airports Association, the Nevada Business Aviation Association, the National Association of State Aviation Officials and many other national associations.

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