The Small Airplane Revitalization Act has crossed a major hurdle by unanimously passing out of the House Transportation Infrastructure Committee.
It now goes to the House of Representatives for consideration.
If passed, the bill promises to double safety and cut certification costs in half for light general aviation airplanes, FAA Administrator Michael Huerta has said.
It addresses a number of challenges facing the general aviation industry caused by outdated regulation, including the steady decline of pilots, flight activity and the sales of new, small general aviation airplanes, Rep. Mike Pompeo, R-Kan., who introduced the bill, said.
“General aviation has never asked for a bailout, but we can cut red tape and at the same time improve safety, effectively revitalizing the industry by cutting the cost of new planes,” Pompeo said in a statement. “The existing outdated certification process needlessly increases the cost of safety and technology upgrades by up to 10 times. With this bill, we can ensure that the general aviation industry has what it needs to thrive.”
The passage was praised by the General Aviation Manufacturers Association.
“The bill will help industry and FAA develop and adopt more effective, consensus-based compliance standards that would spur manufacturers’ investment in aircraft design and help put critical life-saving equipment into the existing fleet of airplanes,” GAMA president and CEO Pete Bunce said in a statement.
Over the past 18 months, the Federal Aviation Administration’s Part 23 Reorganization Aviation Rulemaking Committee, made up of aviation experts and industry representatives, worked to create a regulatory environment to help revitalize the health and safety of new and existing small airplanes, Pompeo said.
The bill requires the implementation of those recommendations by the end of 2015.
It has 31 bipartisan co-sponsors. A companion Senate bill was introduced in May.