FAA wants 100K for flight path info

July 7, 2010 at 2:57 pm | Posted in Aviation Law Current Event | Leave a comment

by Sara M. Langston with the blog faculty

Source: Santa Monica Daily Press

SMO — The FAA says it plans to charge residents $100,000 to review and release data from its six-month flight path test at Santa Monica Airport.

A group of residents who said the test caused a drastic increase in flights over their homes in Sunset Park and Ocean Park requested the data after the FAA claimed the test had only a minimal effect on residents but helped reduce flight delays at SMO and LAX.

The residents, united as the group Neighbors for a Safe and Healthy Community, requested data for flights at SMO for about a nine-month period under the federal Freedom of Information Act. Skeptical that the FAA could be downplaying the number of flights directed to fly over their neighborhoods, they asked for a record of all flights told to take the test route, known as a “250 degree heading,” during the test run.

The group asked for a fee waiver, arguing their request was for a non-commercial purpose, but were denied.

In rejecting the fee waiver request, an FAA official on June 22 stated that “the disclosure of the requested information will not contribute to the understanding of the public at large,” but only to the understanding of “a narrow segment of interested persons.”…more

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