Advocacy & Educating Legislators In The Central Region

News & Information You’ll Want To Know
In Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska & Iowa

by Yasmina Platt
Manager, AOPA Central Southwest Region

The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) continues to be hard at work at the state and local level to keep general aviation pilots and aircraft flying efficiently, safely, and affordably.

As of the time of this writing, the legislatures in all four states in the Central Region (Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska & Iowa) are in session and AOPA is actively supporting, fighting, or, at least, tracking pertaining legislation as necessary.

But, monitoring legislation is not our only task… educating elected officials and other decision-makers about general aviation’s benefits is a task that never ends for GA advocates. Hosting “Aviation Day At The Capitol” events is a good way to reach out to legislators because they provide opportunities to distribute information about aviation’s impact on state economies and generate support for ways to strengthen the industry. Kansas had theirs on February 3rd in Topeka and Iowa had a Transportation Day on February 10th in Des Moines. Missouri will have its Aviation Day At The Capitol on April 5th and we welcome everyone to attend and meet with their legislators.

Another good way of educating legislators is to create a General Aviation Caucus or an Aviation Subcommittee under the House/Senate Transportation Committees. In either case, the idea is the same…to get a bipartisan group of legislators to focus on general aviation issues, and participate in field trips to air traffic control facilities, aircraft manufacturers, airports, and aviation events. In addition, we can make presentations on different GA topics, and legislation that will benefit GA.

While in Topeka, Kansas, I met with four legislators to create a framework for a GA caucus or an aviation subcommittee to advance aviation’s interests and concerns in cooperation with state aviation officials. This would be the first such group in the Central Region.

So, are you doing your part as a GA pilot to engage your legislators? If you are interested in introducing yourself to your legislators and would like some resources to educate them about GA, I can send you some helpful information. Just send me an email: yasmina.platt@aopa.org www.aopa.org/central-southwest-rm

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