March 2, 2017

NBAA staff represented business aviation at the 2017 Alaska Air Carriers Association (AACA) Annual Conference and Trade Show, held Feb. 22-23 in Anchorage, AK, to underscore the industry’s value in a state where travel is often difficult.

“It was a valuable opportunity to meet and interact with members in the region who deal with unique operational challenges,” said NBAA Project Manager of Operations Brian Koester. “Interacting face-to- face helps us understand the importance of business aviation in Alaska, and how NBAA’s Part 135 Subcommittee can better meet their needs.”

Given the remoteness of most areas in the nation’s largest state, business aviation is a critical lifeline in Alaska, he noted. One of the tenants of the No Plane No Gain advocacy campaign is to underscore the notion that business aviation provides a critical transportation lifeline to thousands of communities all across the U.S. that have little or no airline service – such as many communities in Alaska.

“Around 82 percent of communities in the state are not connected to the road system,” noted NBAA Northwest Regional Representative Kristi Ivey. “The weather and geography present some truly interesting challenges for operators in the state.

“NBAA has members in Alaska who are also members of various other aviation stakeholder groups in the state, so the importance of maintaining positive relationships within the aviation community is critical,” Ivey said. “We also met with some of our key members based in Alaska, and had a great dialogue with members of the Alaska Governor’s Aviation Advisory Board, the Alaska Aviation Coordination Council, and the Alaska Airmen Association, who are starting up a new program geared toward young aviation professionals called the Alaska Airmen NextGen Aviators Group.“

Ivey also noted that as part of the Alaska Aviation System Plan, the state’s Department of Transportation and Public Facilities is seeking comments to help prioritize airports for potential funding for weather stations. Comments are due by March 6.

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