Six members of the California Congressional delegation recently called on Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood to initiate a collaborative study involving all stakeholders to address community concerns about helicopter noise.
In a joint letter, Democrat Representatives Howard Berman, Brad Sherman, Henry Waxman, Adam Schiff, and Janice Hahn, and Sen. Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), urged LaHood to direct the FAA to formally solicit stakeholder views on ways to address local concerns. In addition, Rep. Berman spoke directly to LaHood about the need for the study, according to a report from HAI.
“Both HAI and our operator members in the LA basin have repeatedly said we welcome the opportunity to work directly with the community, and in fact have met with members of the community many times over the years,” said HAI President Matt Zuccaro. “But we’ve said all along that the basis of that conversation has to be a valid study of the scope of the issue. So we welcome the delegation’s call for a collaborative effort to conduct the study.”
In addition, Sen. Feinstein has included language calling for the study in a committee report accompanying the Transportation, Housing, and Urban Development Appropriations Bill. Committee reports do not carry the force of law, but are often sent with a bill when it is forwarded from a committee to the full Senate or House, and convey the intent of Congress in passing the bill. Federal departments and agencies such as the DOT and FAA are often wise to heed those intentions.