COPA Responds To Aerodrome Regs

Airport construction projects could be under greater scrutiny.
Airport construction projects could be under greater scrutiny.

The Canadian Owners and Pilots Association sent a 17-page response to Transport Canada’s proposal to allow more public input into aviation-related construction projects.

TC’s Notice of Proposed Amendment to the regulations follows the lead of Transport Minister Lisa Raitt who called for more consultation with local stakeholders when new airports are built and when significant construction projects within airports are proposed.

The NPA targets all aerodromes and one of COPA’s main points is that seaplane bases should be exempt because of their minimal impact on land use and function.

There are also a lot of suggestions for tweaks to the various triggers that would prompt a public input process.

But COPA also takes issue with the fundamental fairness of the process and the murky circumstances under which the minister, as the sole authority, makes the decision on whether to allow the project to go ahead.

The regulations are geared towards identifying the triggering mechanism that must result in a decision, but are silent on the most important aspect of the proposed regulation, being the decision itself,” COPA said in its submission. “We strongly suspect this lack of detail and clarity will very quickly result in difficulties in the future for the Minister and aerodrome operators and proponents, with the associated negative impact on the aviation industry in Canada.”