Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Proper Spending of Aviation Funds Concerns Official

Newspaper article THE JOURNAL RECORD

Proper Spending of Aviation Funds Concerns Official

Article excerpt

"I'm concerned that funding is getting smaller and the needs (are) getting larger," said Joe Levraea, Louisiana aeronautics director. "I'm concerned that Congress is going to change things for the worst." Proper Spending

of Aviation Funds

Concerns Official

By Bill May

Journal Record Staff Reporter

The aviation community must work together to ensure that the federal aviation trust fund is properly spent, a Louisiana official said Monday in Oklahoma City.

"I'm concerned that funding is getting smaller and the needs (are) getting larger," said Joe Levraea, Louisiana aeronautics director. "I'm concerned that Congress is going to change things for the worst.

"What we, the aviation community, must do is, officials on the state level must talk to their local congressmen, work with them to make sure there are no changes affecting aviation and that the FAA (Federal Aviation Administration) doesn't get any smaller.

"Congress is expected to adopt a new airports improvements plan bill within the next two years, so now is the time to start talking with them.

"I'm concerned that they will force the funding down to the state level with block grants and force the states to take a bigger responsibility in administration. If they do this, there will be nothing to pay the administrative costs of these programs, which means there will be less money for aviation.

"There will be less money for asphalt and concrete at a time when our needs are increasing."

Levraea was one of about 35 people attending a two-day FAA-State Directors Meeting at the Waterford Hotel. Aviation directors from Oklahoma, New Mexico, Arkansas and Texas also attended the meeting, along with their staffs.

Clyde DeHart Jr., administrator of the FAA's Southwest Region based in Fort Worth, was keynote speaker at the semiannual meeting.

"This is an opportunity for us and the state directors to talk about what's going on in aviation in the various states and in Washington," he said.

The meeting is basically a partnership between the FAA and the state aviation departments, said Dana Batey, director of Oklahoma Aeronautics Commission. …

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