DOT Tasked With Assessing Illegal Charter

The National Air Transportation Association is hoping that a provision in the comprehensive five-year FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018 will help step up efforts to “root out” illegal charter operations. Section 540 of the bill calls on the Secretary of Transportation to produce an analysis of reports filed to the FAA’s illegal charter hotline over the past 10 years.

That analysis should include actions that the secretary or FAA administrator can take upon receipt of a report, how resources are allocated, and challenges of identifying charter operations. Further, the analysis must include steps that can be taken to combat illegal charter.

 

This measure comes as the international community has intensified its focus on illegal charter activities. Last spring, BACA-The Air Charter Association teamed up with the European Business Aviation Association to fight illegal charter, including an effort to collect data on the breadth and scope of “gray charter” practices through a joint reporting mechanism. NATA, meanwhile, last spring established an Illegal Charter Task Force that formalized ongoing efforts to fight the practice. That task force is working to clearly define what constitutes an illegal charter, sort through what is intentional and unintentional illegal activity, and work with the FAA, other regulators, and the industry to stem illegal practices.

 

NATA praised Sen. Catherine Cortez Masto (D-Nevada) for backing the congressional provision that the association hopes will forward these efforts. NATA president Gary Dempsey added that the measure will foster the association’s work with the FAA, “through the association’s Illegal Charter Task Force, on efforts to combat illegal charter, including helping the industry to understand the scope of the issue and recommendations for protecting passengers and legitimate businesses.”

 

Fonte: AINonline by Kerry Lynch

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