As I write this, it looks as though Mother Nature may allow a break in the cold weather and begin to warm up. But of course, as is normal in March, it will be windy. I hope everyone is wrapping up their winter projects and, by the time you read this, are out flying every chance you get.
Area events will be starting to get underway. Be sure to take lots of pictures and send them my way. I’ll try to get them into my column.
Missouri House Bill 370 asked to restrict all UAS from flying within five miles of any airport and to limit flight above 300 feet. This would have severely restrained our hobby. Additionally it would have established flying outside the prescribed parameters as a Class D misdemeanor, punishable by a fine of at least $100, but not to exceed $500.
Thank you to Dan Smith, of Eldon, Missouri, for working with Representative Ken Wilson to have House Bill 370 withdrawn. Modelers in Missouri remain able to fly without the restrictions on our aircraft or UAS because Dan engaged with Representative Wilson and provided him with the information showing that we already follow a set of safety rules provided by our community-based organization.
Caption: The pink circles indicate a five-mile radius around every airport in Missouri.
(Insert MO5mileairports.jpg here please, I realize it is a small file, but hope if we keep it small it will be okay.)
The next step for each state in the district may be to get the AMA recognized as a community-based organization that provides safety guidelines for recreational flying of model aircraft. This was recently accomplished in Alaska. I can see this plan benefitting modelers in every state.
February 7, 2015, was a great day to hold the Kansas City Radio Control (KCRC) Association’s Swap and Shop. I think it as nearly 70°. I was able to talk with many members from the area at the swap meet.
Many people are concerned about drones or multirotor devices. Some referred to them as toys and not a true form of modeling. Few were familiar with the Know Before You Fly campaign (knowbeforeyoufly.org). This is a joint effort between AMA, the Association for Unmanned Vehicle Systems International (AUVSI), and the Small UAV Coalition. The FAA has approved it every step of the way. This is only one of the ways AMA is working cooperatively with the FAA to keep flying safe.
Thanks to Duane Hulen and KCRC for putting on the event. It is the best swap meet in the western portion of District VI.
I was happy to award money to three clubs in the district for the Take off And Grow (TAG) grant program. Each year $2,000 is available for each district to award to clubs.
This is the first time in the three years I’ve been in office that there were any applications. I understand this may be because the form was changed and is not as complicated to complete. It was my pleasure to distribute the entire $2,000 to deserving clubs this year. Thank you for taking the time to submit your applications.
The clubs who received award money are The Kansas City Northern Nights, the Farm Friendly Flyers, and the Louisville Area Soaring Society
At this time I am aware of only one Flying Site Improvement Grant request for our district. We have typically had more in the past. check out the program at www.modelaircraft.org/documents (Document 712) and make plans to apply next year.
If you fly within five miles of any full-scale airport, please send me an email to let me know what airport, and what your club sanction number is. I would like to have this data for our entire district.