Wednesday, August 01, 2007

FAA History Lesson -- August 1

Mercy ! August 1st is certainly a busy day in the FAA. On some days, it’s hard to find much of significance to relay to you. It’s not a problem for this date.

From the FAA Historical Chronology, 1926-1996...

”Aug 1, 1928: As a first step toward promoting uniform state aeronautical legislation consistent with Federal law, the Aeronautics Branch issued Aeronautics Bulletin No. 18 reviewing the characteristics of various state statutes and setting forth suggested drafts of required laws. At this time, 20 states had no aeronautical legislation. (See Dec 16, 1930.) ”

We’ve already covered this territory before but I thought you’d get a kick out of the date: 1928. Orville and Wilbur had only built the Wright Flyer in 1903.

”Aug 1, 1957: The United States and Canada informally established the North American Air Defense Command (NORAD). The two countries ratified a formal agreement the following May. The organization was renamed the North American Aerospace Defense Command on May 12, 1981. ”

It’s funny how folks forget we work a lot of military aircraft. If you’re an aviation buff you might be interested in these two: Looking Glass and TACAMO. The Navy boys always had a sense of humor -- even about the most serious of missions. The E-6 was heavily modified including enlarged fuel tanks. Their callsign was WAY2. And because the aircraft was in the “heavy” category is was said over the radio frequency as “WAY TWO HEAVY.”

”Aug 1, 1993: A new collective bargaining agreement between FAA and the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) went into effect. The four-year agreement covered all operational air traffic control specialists in terminals and centers. (See May 1, 1989.) ”

Ah, the good old days. Back when our government actually negotiated. I noticed that this contract was for 4 years. The current one -- the one they insist on calling a contract even though nobody agreed to it -- lasts five years. I bet you can’t explain that one to me. If you’re going to impose your work rules why stop after five years ? What ? We’re going to start negotiating in 5 years but always keep in mind that we don’t really have to negotiate ? If you don’t negotiate like we want you to we’ll just impose another contract on you ? We are still in America aren’t we ? I feel like I’ve fallen Through the Looking Glass.

Don Brown
August 1, 2007

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