On September 8, 2008, the FAA published a notice in the Federal Register (73 Fed.Reg. 52074) that it is proposing to modify the standard grant application requirements that are required of a sponsor of a non-primary airport before receiving a grant under the Airport Improvement Program (AIP).  This modification would require that a sponsor of a nonprimary airport submit a list of the aircraft (both fixed wing and rotary wing) that are based on the airport.  The FAA invites public comments on this proposed modification.  Comments must be submitted on or before October 8, 2008.

FAA believes that this information is necessary because "accurate information on based aircraft is an important element of justification for many proposed AIP projects at nonprimary airports."  In addition, the FAA posits that the information regarding based aircraft "supports the airport’s importance in the biennial Report to Congress – The National Plan of Integrated Airport Systems (NPIAS) and in the Airport Master Record." 

FAA defines "based aircraft" as an "operational aircraft that is registered in the FAA Aircraft Registry that is at the airport the majority of the year."  The proposal is that the FAA may require a sponsor for a nonprimary airport to include the "N-number" for each based aircraft or to update the list of based aircraft submitted with the most recent Form 5010 inspection.  Unfortunately, the Notice does not provide definition of how airports are to determine which aircraft are "based aircraft."  The FAA concludes the Notice by stating that it will consider a failure to provide the information "as a factor when considering a request from the airport for discretionary funding."

Comments can be sent or delivered to FAA, Airports Financial Assistance Division, APP-500, Room 619, 800 Independence Avenue, SW., Washington D.C. 20591.  Comments can also be submitted electronically by clicking here and then clicking on "Send a Comment or Submission."  This will take you to the Regulations.gov page for docket number FAA-2008-0972-0001.