Kicking off the first 2015 meeting of the state Legislature’s “Aviation Caucus” Thursday will be a visit from two members of the BRAVO 369 Flight Foundation, a Bellingham-based group dedicated to recreating a flight along the historic Alaska-Siberia air route used in World War II.
The little-known air route represented a dangerous 6,000-mile journey from Great Falls, Montana, to Alaska and on through Siberia to Moscow. As part of the Lend-Lease Program, the original BRAVO 369 pilots risked their lives by delivering military aircraft and other supplies to the United States’ allies in Russia during World War II.
“The story of the BRAVO 369 flights is fascinating and largely untold. Shedding light on these heroic pilots and making history come to life is exactly what I’d hoped I could do when I formed this caucus,” said Sen. Jim Honeyford, R-Sunnyside. Continue reading
Last year was the first time we organized an “aviation caucus” devoted to general and business aviation and its economic impact on Washington. Our job is to help lawmakers better understand the burdens and obstacles companies confront and how to make flying safer and more accessible. I’m pleased to report that there is more interest this year and we will be continuing to meet on a regular basis. Our first meeting (after the organizational meeting) is scheduled for Tuesday, January 28, at 7 am in the Cherberg building and I encourage anyone from back home with an interest in the aeronautics industry to stop by if you happen to be in Olympia.
As you know, I’m a proud member of the Civil Air Patrol. One thing I’m particularly excited about is the formation of the Aviation Caucus at the Washington State Legislature and the impact it will have on public policy and in the aerospace industry as a whole.
I was asked by the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, the National Business Aviation Association, and the Civil Air Patrol to organize this caucus to educate legislators and stakeholders about general and business aviation and its economic impact on Washington. We will also help lawmakers better understand the burdens and obstacles companies confront and how to make flying safer and more accessible.
We had our first organizational meeting and ten legislators attended. We discussed topics for future meetings, and Representative Gael Tarleton and myself were elected co-chairs. I hope this will will lay the groundwork for beneficial aviation-related business legislation in the future.