Agricultural operators welcome government’s ASRR response

The Aerial Agricultural Association of Australia, one of the most energetic critics of the regulator’s recent performance, has warmly welcomed Government’s response to the Forsyth Aviation Regulation Review and the Deputy Prime Minister’s appointment of an additional three experienced aviation people to the CASA Board.

AAAA CEO, Phil Hurst, said that the appointments to the CASA Board were “a critical first step to reform of a dysfunctional CASA.”Airtractor 06

“AAAA has previously welcomed the appointment of a new CEO of CASA, Mr Skidmore, and the announcement today of three new Board members – all with aviation experience – is another strong downpayment on improving CASA governance and creating a better relationship with industry,” said Mr Hurst.

“The Government’s detailed response to the Forsyth Review is also a very positive statement of intent to both reset the CASA/industry relationship and to bring CASA up to speed as a regulator we can be proud of.

“In particular, AAAA welcomes the Government’s commitment to issue a new statement of expectations to CASA that will give effect to the recommendations in the Forsyth Report.

“By committing to a risk management hierarchy based on a classification of operations (Recommendation 28 in the Government’s response), the Government will reinforce the value of identifying sectors of industry that are capable of delivering safety outcomes with CASA support, as witnessed by AAAA’s ongoing work with CASA on establishing a sector risk profile for aerial application.

“AAAA fully supports the Deputy Prime Minister’s decision to not force the transfer of ATSB’s safety education role to CASA as ATSB’s education role is fundamentally different to CASAs.

“AAAA notes, however, that good policy intentions from the Government must be converted into coherent actions and improvements by CASA. Industry desperately wants meaningful change in its interactions with CASA – including improvements in response to issues such as regulatory reform, AOC issuing and amendment timeframes, licencing and reductions in costs.

“The government’s response today should represent a very welcome turning of the page for aviation policy. AAAA remains fully committed to working with the government, the new CASA Board and the new CASA CEO to deliver a better aviation industry for all Australians.”

Paul Phelan, Dec 4. 2014

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