As the Government marched towards a shutdown it was hard to avoid the many news stories about how exactly we, the citizens of theses United States of America would be affected. As I perused the stories looking for tidbits about the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), I was met with news that most of the functions within the FAA wouldn’t be closed given that they were deemed “essential”. In addition, history has shown that those of us in the business aviation industry haven’t even a hint of turbulence from prior shutdowns.
Just to be sure, I visited the National Business Aviation Association’s website and was met with the following article: Government Shutdown Expected to Have Limited Immediate Impact on Essential Aviation Safety Services. Feeling confident that everything was status quo, I didn’t think much more of it until mid-morning on Tuesday, October 1st, the first day of the shutdown.
Given that Guardian Jet is in the business of buying and selling aircraft on behalf of our clients, we rely heavily on the functions associated with the FAA’s Civil Aircraft Registry as this is the department that handles registrations and titles for all of our domestic aircraft from private planes to airliners. Therefore, I was shocked to learn early yesterday morning that this time around, the Government decided that this division within the FAA was not “essential” and therefore, our ability to buy and sell aircraft have come to a screeching halt.
More specifically, the current shutdown means parties will not be able to conduct title searches, obtain FAA records, file documents with the FAA, or obtain International Registry codes (i.e., file 135 forms) for closings involving U.S. registered aircraft and related engines. Again, this affects every aircraft owner no matter how big or small.
Obviously this directly affects our ability to do business but please keep in mind that by shuttering the FAA Registry, there will be no new aircraft deliveries (not only for the business aviation OEM’s but for Boeing and the others as well), no changes in registration, and no pre-owned sales, etc.
The purpose of this post this morning is to alert our industry that we’ve come to a screeching halt and thus far, I haven’t read a single main stream or industry article that is making our industry aware of this issue. Case in point, here is AIN’s headline in their weekly AIN Alerts from yesterday: Government Shutdown Has No Immediate Effect on Aviation
Those that were trying to close an aircraft sale yesterday or today are coming to the realization that this is a real threat to our industry but I’m asking that you please consider helping spread the word given that this shutdown could once again cause another setback in what is already a very fragile and slow recovery.