2022 – Edition 4 – May 8

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Table of Contents

Note: The order of material varies in hotline emails, but is always presented the same on this landing page. Readers scrolling through content on or printing this page will find it organized consistent with the table of contents.

The President’s Desk
ARSA Remembers
ARSA Works
Legal Brief
ARSA on the Hill
Industry Calendar

The President’s Desk

Collaboration Brings Results Across the Globe

According to Oxford Languages, collaboration is “the action of working with someone to produce or create something.” In the international business of aviation, collaboration with many diverse people and organizations produces useful results.

From its inception, ARSA understood the international nature of aviation and the need for mutual interests to be identified and to prevail. To that end, collaboration is key. That’s why NORDAM was a founding member of ARSA and why we continue our allegiance to the association today. This representational powerhouse facilitates collaboration among individuals, companies, unions, trade associations, appointed and elected government officials, local organizations, and foreign aviation authorities.

The association operates with limited resources, using its expertise to identify issues that must be addressed and support those matters that are being addressed. Whenever ARSA learns of a current or future need, it begins the process of collaboration. It seeks allies from across a wide ranging spectrum of parties to develop mutual positions. Even if a given concern doesn’t directly affect association members but instead their customers and business partners, we still support any resulting initiative with informational resources for the broadest perspective for decision-making.

Another level of collaboration that strengthens us as an organization? Collaboration among members. As president of ARSA, I want all members to understand the depth and breadth of its collaborative – and independent – process. To spread the word to reach every maintenance organization, and inspire them to join.

Why should every MRO be part of ARSA? The first reason is to receive the most current information on almost any regulatory compliance topic confronting an international aviation maintenance business. Incidentally, this is why it’s critical for you to respond to ARSA surveys – so we can keep our finger on the pulse of this community. Did you know an ARSA representative responds to written member queries within two business days and often sooner with practical and understandable answers? Even if we don’t know the answer immediately, because of our collaboration efforts, ARSA readily finds another dependable source to inform our response.

The next reason is the power of ARSA’s representation on the most important issues to aviation maintenance organizations. Our collaboration with allies during the worst of the COVID pandemic resulted in direct monies for aviation maintenance organizations. And ARSA leadership on the workforce development front resulted in a multi-year grant program supporting education of aviation maintenance technicians.

If those two reasons somehow are not convincing enough, I can tell you from personal experience ARSA’s publication of model documents to establish compliance with 14 CFR part 145 was invaluable to NORDAM. These documents empower any user to move from quality control to quality assurance to establish safety systems. Likewise, ARSA’s global footprint and its powerful collaborative capabilities helped our company establish a thriving certificated repair station in Taiwan. That’s across the globe from our headquarters in Tulsa, Oklahoma. And we achieved it in the midst of an unprecedented global pandemic.

If you have any questions the association team can’t answer about the importance of collaboration among all certificated maintenance organizations through ARSA membership: Please send me a message. I will explain in more detail why, as a leading innovator in composite repair for aerospace, NORDAM is convinced of it.

Terrell Siegfried
2022 ARSA president | NORDAM assistant general counsel and corporate secretary

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ARSA Remembers

John Hickey

John Hickey, former FAA deputy associate administrator for aviation safety, died after a long battle with cancer on April 19.

Hickey’s FAA career spanned three decades. After graduating from Boston University in 1980 and spending 10 years in private industry, he became a flight test engineer in the Transport Airplane Directorate, where he served in an ascending series of roles culminating as manager. He was then director of the Aircraft Certification Service from 2000 until he was selected by Peggy Gilligan in 2009 to serve as her deputy.

“Like many of the people I end up admiring, John and I started our relationship on a rocky note,” ARSA Executive Director Sarah MacLeod remembers. “He and I both were easy to rile and blunt; a combination that resulted in heated exchanges. As we became more familiar with each other and understood that we both held a strong passion for aviation and aviation safety, we become allies. His stamp on the industry will be felt for years.”

ARSA’s colleagues at JDA Aviation have posted a thorough review of Hickey’s career accomplishments, which can be reviewed at

ARSA is seeking information about remembrance opportunities for Hickey and will keep its membership posted. Any readers who would like to share memories or personal experiences should contact the association.

The family has requested that donations be made in John’s honor to the Dana Farber Cancer Institute. Click here to make a memorial gift.


Norman Mineta

Secretary Norman Mineta receives the Presidential Medal of Freedom from President George W. Bush.

Norman Mineta, the first Asian American to become a federal cabinet secretary, died at his home in Edgewater, Maryland on May 3. He was 90.

Mineta’s statesmanship served the nation beginning in the late 1960s as a San Jose, CA city councilman. He became mayor in 1971, serving one term before successfully running for Congress. Serving eleven terms in the House of Representatives, he briefly moved to the private sector before becoming Secretary of Commerce for President Clinton and then to head the Department of Transportation for President Bush.

He was Secretary of Transportation during the terrorist attacks on Sept. 11, 2001, ordering commercial flights immediately grounded after the use of three airliners – and attempted use of a fourth – to strike the World Trade Center in New York and the Pentagon in Arlington, Virginia.

His influence was gained through personal relationships and humanity rather than politics. He sought information and knowledge that served the public and was recognized for his compassionate and thoughtful approach to contentious issues. He was respected and revered on both sides of the aisle, a wonderful human being who will be remembered for the outstanding service to his country in spite (or because) of suffering the indignity of ethnical interment during World War II.

“I had the privilege and honor of working with Secretary Mineta when he served as Chairman of the House Aviation Subcommittee, Chairman of the House Transportation & Infrastructure Committee and other important aviation positions,” recalled Marshall S. Filler, ARSA managing director and general counsel. “He was a thoughtful leader, rarely partisan and never divisive.”

The personal interest he took of those in his sphere was evidenced during attendance at an early ARSA board meeting. He not only ate dinner with the group but spent his entire evening listening and learning of aviation maintenance concerns. Years later, he still remembered that meeting and the association. “We passed each other on a hotel escalator,” Sarah MacLeod ARSA executive director remembers with deep respect, “Then Secretary of Transportation, Mineta called out ‘hey, Sarah, how are those repair stations doing?”

The country has missed his statesmanship since his retirement from public services, but it needs to remember and honor his legacy and contributions.


ARSA Works

What ARSA Has Done Lately – First Quarter 2022

Each quarter the board of directors receives reports on the association’s activities and fiscal health. Step into a board member’s shoes by reviewing the financial, operations, legislative and regulatory reports highlighting advocacy on behalf of aviation safety between January and March 2022.

Board Business

Directors unanimously elected Alison McHugh to serve an initial term on the board.

Fiscal Health

Annual Conference revenues drove strong performance for the quarter.


The team is expanding outreach efforts to include regular communications to new members.

Regulatory Advocacy

  • Published update from Department of Transportation clarifying policy for applications to the Aviation Manufacturing Jobs Protection Program (AMJP).
  • Engaged issues related to EASA Sampling Inspection System (SIS) visits on U.S. repair stations and resulting challenges to acceptable parts documentation practices.
  • Publicized FAA announcement at ARSA Conference of progress on release of updated 14 CFR part 147.
  • Ongoing meetings regarding ARAC Part 145 Working Group AMC development.
  • Meetings and preparation for letter sent to acting FAA administrator in beginning of April seeking validation of ARSA E100 Form for compliance with parts documentation procedures under U.S./EU Maintenance Annex Guidance.

Legislative and Lobbying

  • Instructions for Continued Airworthiness:
    • Held briefings for House and Senate aviation subcommittee staff, member offices re: ICA issue and need for congressional support for ARAC task request.
    • Developed and circulated draft congressional letter to FAA.
  • Developed and submitted draft appropriations language re: Department of Defense acceptance of FAA approvals.
  • Coordinated opposition to Safe Aircraft Maintenance Standards Act (R. 7321).
  • Worked with Aviation Technician Education Counsel, Aircraft Mechanics Fraternal Association and AAR to build support for National Center for Advancement of Aviation Act (R. 3482, S. 1752).

Communications and Surveys

ARSA in the News – Selected Industry Coverage

US lawmaker again tries to heighten aircraft maintenance oversight
March 31, 2022

A top US lawmaker is again seeking to increase government oversight of commercial aircraft maintenance and of non-US aircraft repair stations. The provisions have received pushback from the aircraft maintenance industry

Building An Aviation Maintenance Workforce The Toyota Way
Aviation Week
March 16, 2022

The aviation industry could potentially learn from industries such as automotive when it comes to attracting and building a skilled technical workforce. According to Brett Levanto, vice president of operations at the Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA).

Aircraft mechanic shortage could hamper airline operations
Travel Weekly
January 25, 2022

“If we don’t have enough technicians, you are going to see delays, cancellations, potentially fewer aircraft in operation,” said Christian Klein, vice president of operations for the Aeronautical Repair Station Association, a trade group that represents the industry.

Industry Presses FAA on ICA
January 4, 2022

On Dec. 27, representatives of 14 aviation industry associations urged FAA Administrator Steve Dickson to act on the agency’s enforcement of rules related to instructions for continued airworthiness (ICA).

ARSA Industry Editorials

AMT Magazine We’ll Allow It
January/February 2022 | Brett Levanto
Aviation Week The Places You’ll Go
February 2022 | Brett Levanto
Thank You For Reading
March 2022 | Brett Levanto
DOM Magazine Plagiarizing Yourself
February 2022 | Brett Levanto
“Airworthiness Consultants”
March 2022 | Brett Levanto


Conducted 2022 Member Survey (results coming soon).

Events, Meetings and Training


Hosted the 2022 Annual Conference.


  • Sarah participated in multiple meetings of FAA’s Aviation Rulemaking Advisory Committee (ARAC) and working groups.
  • Brett and Sarah coordinated several meetings related to ARSA’s repair station manual compilation.
  • Brett participated in multiple FAA Youth Access to American Jobs in Aviation Task Force public and subcommittee meetings.
  • Brett attended multiple meetings of the Choose Aerospace Scholarship Selection Committee.
  • Christian participated in multiple lobbying coalition meetings related to aviation workforce.
  • Christian attended TSA Aviation Safety Advisory Committee (ASAC) and insider threat subcommittee meetings.
  • Christian participated in several International Air Transportation Association (IATA) workforce and aeronautical skills (Tech Ops Sub Group) meetings.
  • Christian held an ICA Strategy Meeting (Jan. 10).
  • Christian met with David Dreyfuss of HireTalentResources to discuss aviation workforce development activities (Jan. 27).
  • Christian met with Victor Sarmieto and Yoland Dixon of Sen. Inhofe’s office to discuss 2022 priorities (Jan. 27).
  • Christian had a catch-up meeting with Alex Burkett of GAMA (Jan. 27).
  • Christian attended the House Aviation Subcommittee meeting on 5G (Feb. 3).
  • Sarah, Christian and Brett met with Stephen Council of the Wall Street Journal to discuss industry and workforce issues (Feb. 8).
  • Brett participated in a call with the Funding Subcommittee of the Youth Access to American Jobs in Aviation Task Force (Feb. 8).
  • Brett attended a virtual meeting of the Opportunity America Jobs and Careers Coalition (Feb. 10).
  • Christian briefed Senate Aviation Subcommittee staff regarding the ARAC ICA task (Feb. 10).
  • Christian and Brett were interviewed by the GAO regarding the future of the aviation workforce (Feb. 14).
  • Christian met with Paul Feldman and Amanda Joyner of GAMA to discuss Section 625 Grants (Feb. 16).
  • Christian briefed House Aviation Subcommittee staff to discuss the proposed FAA maintenance manual ARAC task (Feb. 22)
  • Sarah and Marshall attended Ian Cheyne’s retirement party in Colleyville, TX (Mar. 5).
  • Christian met with Calvin Wilborn of Senator Warnock’s office regarding the FAA ICA maintenance manual issue (Mar. 21).


FAA Opens Second Round of Workforce Grants

The FAA is accepting applications for its second round of Aviation Workforce Development Grants. Interested organizations may seek funding to develop or support programs stimulating pilot or technician career opportunities.  Applications are due by June 10.

Program criteria and application details are provided in the notices of funding opportunity available on

(1) Technical Workers

(2) Pilots

For technician program grants, projects must fall into one of the following categories:

(a) Projects that establish new educational programs that teach technical skills used in aviation maintenance, including purchasing equipment, or to improve existing programs;

(b) Projects that establish scholarships or apprenticeships for individuals pursuing employment in the aviation maintenance industry;

(c) Projects that support outreach about careers in the aviation maintenance industry to primary, secondary, and post-secondary school students; OR communities underrepresented in the industry;

(d) Projects that support educational opportunities related to aviation maintenance in economically disadvantaged geographic areas;

(e) Projects that support transition to careers in aviation maintenance, including for members of the Armed Forces; or

(f) Projects that otherwise enhance aviation maintenance technical education or the aviation maintenance industry workforce.

ARSA and its allies have been working with the agency throughout its development of the programs. For background information, visit the FAA’s program website or review the content below.


Expanding Pell Grants for Skills Training

On April 19, ARSA joined hundreds of organizations interested in skills development on a letter to U.S. House and Senate Leadership seeking expansion of Pell Grant eligibility to shorter-term education and training programs.

Federal Pell Grants are a form of U.S. government financial aid to students at undergraduate universities and similar post-secondary education programs. Grants generally do not have to be repaid and are available to those meeting eligibility requirements in amounts dependent on their expected family contribution (e.g., how much money the student can pay according to financial information submitted to the government), the cost of attendance determined by their school/program and their enrollment status and timeframe.

Pell Grants can currently be used only for programs totaling at least 600 hours over 15 weeks. According to the Community College Research Center at Columbia University, available evidence indicates that low-income adults in particular would benefit from access to Pell Grants for short term credentialing programs. Unfortunately, efforts to expand eligibility have met roadblocks because of perceived issues with the value, e.g., earnings impact, to students. As described in the letter, including short term training leading to a recognized credential in grant eligibility would expand program access and allow students to balance their personal and professional obligations while quickly transitioning into advanced careers.

“Expanding Pell Grant eligibility to shorter-term education and training programs will help create affordable and accessible pathways to postsecondary credentials for tens of thousands of students,” the letter said. “Eligible programs must be determined as in-demand and demonstrate wage progression for graduates. They must also be aligned with a recognized postsecondary credential, meet employer hiring requirements including for licensure or certification, and articulate for credit to support longer-term career pathways.”

For aviation employers, embracing skills built through such credentials – particularly those that are “stackable” with other certifications or accreditations – can open doorways for non-certificated individuals to advance rapidly into aircraft technician roles. Such program graduates make for model entry-level personnel and could potentially transition quickly into repairman certification or other career development tracks. In supporting broader availability of Pell Grant funds, the population of students who could quickly turn their education into employment readiness would dramatically increase.

To read the full letter, click here.


ARSA Seeks FAA Clarification on E100

Some U.S. ARSA members with EASA approval have received pushback from FAA inspectors about the use of the E100 form to document new parts received without proper documentation.

ARSA created the E100 form in 2016 to face the Maintenance Annex Guidance (MAG) requirements that a new part be traceable to the production approval holder (PAH) and that a release be documented on an FAA Form 8130-3. When new parts are not accompanied by the proper documentation, the E100 form requires an extensive inspection process that assesses the part, its packaging, records, physical condition, identifying information, conformity with manufacturer data and other attributes.

The manager of the FAA’s maintenance division advised ARSA that under U.S. regulations, the E100, “is an acceptable method of compliance with Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (14 CFR) sections 43.13(a) and 43.9 when inspecting new parts received without the documentation requirement by the FAA-EASA Maintenance Annex Guidance.” As a result, the E100, which is provided free to ARSA members, has been in widespread use since 2016.

Recently, however, at the apparent prompting of EASA, FAA inspectors at local flight standards district offices have begun disregarding the division manager’s 2016 statement. In at least one case, an ARSA member was forced to remove the E100 process to advance its EASA renewal application.

While EASA has long indicated its preference that the FAA Form 8130-3 come from the PAH, the MAG contains no such requirement. It is the FAA, not EASA, that interprets and enforces FAA regulations and the requirements of the bilaterals within the United States. The FAA inspectors in question are apparently unwilling to either abide by the plain language of the regulations and international agreements or stand up for their own agency’s application of the U.S. rules.

On April 7, ARSA sent a letter to Acting FAA Administrator Billy Nolen asking for confirmation the E100 is still an acceptable means of compliance with U.S. regulations. The letter explained why ARSA believes the E100 is fully compatible with 14 CFR. ARSA told Nolen that, “[i]t seems that some FAA personnel are more committed to enforcing EASA preferences than the FAA regulations and the bilateral agreement’s Special Conditions. We are also concerned that FAA personnel below the level of division manager have apparently ignored FAA policy.”

The association also reminded Nolen that under FAA regulations, the bilateral and the Technical Implementation Procedures, a new part sent to an EASA approved repair station is considered an export and must be accompanied by an FAA Form 8130-3.

The FAA provided an interim response acknowledging receipt of ARSA’s letter and promising a review, but did not, as ARSA requested, clarify whether the E100 remains acceptable pending FAA’s analysis of the issue. ARSA sent an additional letter on May 3, repeating our request for that clarification.

As ARSA awaits the FAA’s response, members are encouraged to report to instances of inspectors questioning the use of the E100 form.

To read the exchange so far, click here.


CAAC Seeks Comments on 145 Guidance

The Civil Aviation Administration of China (CAAC) has released three documents related to CCAR-145R4. The draft guidance materials cover certificate applications as well as personnel qualification and safety management under the Chinese maintenance rules. 

The following Advisory Circulars are were opened for comment in April (click the document identifier to download an English language Word document version): 

(1) “Guidelines for Domestic Maintenance Unit Application and Approval” (AC-145-FS-001R1). 

(2) “Development of Maintenance Unit Training Syllabus” (AC-145-FS-013R2). 

(3) “Quality and Safety Management System for Maintenance Units” (AC-145-FS-015R1). 

ARSA encourages impacted members to submit comments, feedback, and suggestions to, with the subject line “CCAR-145R4 related AC feedback.” The agency’s deadline has passed, but interested parties should still contact the agency to submit feedback.

Note: The original announcement from the CAAC included a sample comment matrix in Mandarin. Contact the authority for English-language guidance related to submission (if necessary). 


Final Documents/Your Two Cents

This list includes Federal Register publications, such as final rules, Advisory Circulars and policy statements, as well as proposed rules and policies of interest to ARSA members.

To view the list, click here.



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Legal Brief

Editor’s note: This material is provided as a service to association members for educational and informational purposes only. It does not constitute legal or professional advice and is not privileged or confidential.

Layman Lawyer – Pulling the Cord

By Brett Levanto, Vice President of Operations

On April 14, ARSA commented on an Airworthiness Directive (AD) issued by the FAA against certain MARS A.S. emergency parachutes. The association questioned the agency’s authority to issue such an AD and requested its withdrawal.

The AD became effective on April 5 (superseding a previous release), issued as a final rule with request for comments. It addressed an unsafe condition related to the ripcord that could cause a malfunction of the emergency parachute. ARSA’s comments were unrelated to the technical matter, instead highlighting the limitations placed on the agency by the applicability of part 39.

Citing a 2021 exchange with the agency regarding a previous AD, the association explained such a parachute fails to meet the statutory or regulatory definition of “appliance” as required by § 39.3. Regardless of confusion caused by the statute’s use of examples, both the rules and the law require that to be an appliance the item must:

(1) Be used, capable of being used, or intended to be used in operating or controlling aircraft in flight.
(2) Be installed in or attached to aircraft during flight.
(3) Not be a part of an aircraft, aircraft engine, or propeller.

After recognizing the possibility that some parachutes may meet those requirements, ARSA’s comments conclude that the MARS ATL-15 SL does not: “Since such ‘personal parachute assemblies’ are not installed in or attached to an aircraft nor are they used, capable of being used or intended to be used in operating or controlling an aircraft in flight, the device at issue fails to meet either the statutory or regulatory definition of ‘appliance.’ Based on this analysis, the FAA does not have authority under § 39.3 to issue the subject ADs and must withdraw them.”

To read ARSA’s complete comments, click here.

To review the association’s previous exchange with the FAA, visit

Submitting comments to rulemaking documents is a way to direct the agency’s implementation of its own regulations. Learn another important reason to participate in the process from the “real” lawyer below.


Building the Record

By Christian A. Klein, Executive Vice President

Commenting on proposed agency rules is an important way to help shape policy; it’s also critical to challenging a final rule in court.

The Supreme Court has interpreted the Administrative Procedures Act (APA) to establish a strong presumption in favor of judicial review of agency rules unless precluded by law. The APA empowers courts to deem a final agency action – including a rule – unlawful and set them aside if the action is:

  • Arbitrary, capricious, an abuse of discretion, or otherwise not in accordance with the law.
  • Contrary to constitutional right, power, privilege, or immunity.
  • Beyond the statutory jurisdiction, authority, limitations, or short of statutory right.
  • Arrived at in a manner not consistent with procedural requirements.
  • Unsupported by substantial evidence.
  • Unwarranted by the facts.

There are a long line of cases interpreting the meaning of those concepts. For example, in Motor Vehicle Manufacturers Association v. State Farm Auto Mutual Insurance Co. (1983), the Supreme Court said that agencies must examine the relevant data and articulate a satisfactory explanation for their actions including a rational connection between the facts found and the choice made. The Court said that an agency decision is arbitrary if:

…the agency has relied on factors which Congress has not intended it to consider, entirely failed to consider an important aspect of the problem, offered an explanation for its decision that runs counter to the evidence before the agency, or is so implausible that it could not be ascribed to a difference in view or the product of agency expertise.

According to the Congressional Research Service, on this basis, courts have invalidated agency actions that:

  • Fail to consider circumstances that warrant different treatment for different parties.
  • Reach a conclusion that contradicts the underlying record.
  • Fail to provide any coherent explanation for the decision.
  • Contradict expert record evidence without explanation.
  • Fail to consider a relevant and important factors in making a decision.
  • Based on “pure political compromise, not reasoned scientific endeavor”.
  • Utilize a risk model inconsistent with the underlying data.

Agencies are also required to follow APA procedures when taking formal action. There are different standards for developing rules (which are broadly applicable) and adjudications (which are individualized decisions) and for formal and informal proceedings. ARSA members are likely most familiar with informal rulemaking, which involves public notice and comment and is used for “legislative rules” made pursuant to congressionally delegated authority. Formal rulemaking is used only when Congress mandates it and requires an “on the record” public hearing and opportunities for cross examination).

Among the requirements for most informal rulemaking is advance public notice (i.e., publication in the Federal Register) and an opportunity to meaningfully comment. Agencies can avoid these requirements by claiming that the rule is interpretative (i.e., it doesn’t create new obligations), that it’s simply a policy statement or if the agency has good cause (when compliance with the APA procedures is impracticable, unnecessary, or contrary to the public interest).

After the public comment period, the APA requires agencies to consider the relevant matter presented and include a concise general statement of the basis and purpose along with the final rule. Agencies must also consider and, when issuing the final rule, respond to “significant” comments received during comment period. While the Supreme Court has not ruled on what a “significant” comment is, the list referenced above provides an excellent outline.

Taken together, if comments are thoughtful and substantive, provide facts and alternatives, they can make a real difference, both on the development of a rule and on the ability to challenge it. Comments need to point out unintended consequences the agency hasn’t foreseen, challenge assumptions the agency relied on, and provide facts that cannot be disputed for alternative language or withdrawal of a proposal. In all events, keep the list provided in mind as you read the proposal or even the final rule.

While, agencies receive considerable deference from the courts, comments build the record for opponents to use in challenging it, which, in turn increase the likelihood of success.


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ARSA on the Hill

NCAA Bill on the Move, U.S. Rep Visits Earp

By Christian A. Klein, Executive Vice President

On April 28, the House Transportation & Infrastructure (T&I) Committee reported three aviation bills, one of which is among ARSA’s top legislative priority for 2022.

The National Center for the Advancement of Aviation (NCAA) Act (H.R. 3482) would help address industry workforce issues by creating a new federally chartered, private entity to support and promote the civil aviation and aerospace workforce. The NCAA would provide resources to: help develop a skilled U.S. aviation and aerospace workforce through scholarships, apprenticeships, aviation curriculum development, and other outreach efforts; serve as an educational research repository for workforce development and skills training; and provide a national independent forum to support collaboration between government and nongovernmental stakeholders.

ARSA is supporting the NCAA bill as a forum to facilitate comprehensive national aviation workforce strategy. The T&I Committee action is an important step for this bipartisan bill. House passage (the next step) would put pressure on the Senate to move a parallel bill (S. 1752) introduced by Sens. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.) and Tammy Duckworth (D-Ill.).

Please take a moment to send a note encouraging your senators and representative to support the NCAA. Doing so is quick and easy thanks to ARSA’s Legislative Action Center (sponsored by Aircraft Electric Motors).

The other aviation bills reported by the committee were the Drone Infrastructure Inspection Grant Act (H.R. 5315) and Advanced Aviation Infrastructure Modernization (AAIM) Act (H.R. 6270).

HR 5315 would invest $200 million in two grant programs focused on “drones”—an infrastructure inspection program and an education and workforce training program to support more efficient inspection, maintenance, and repair of the nation’s critical infrastructure, and better equip the U.S. workforce to use drone technology.

The AAIM Act would establish a two-year pilot program that invests $25 million in competitive grants for state, local, territorial, and Tribal governments to prepare for the development and deployment of AAM vertiports and related infrastructure.

Continue reading “ARSA on the Hill” below this note about ARSA PAC…


Want to Learn More About ARSA PAC?

ARSA’s Political Action Committee helps elect congressional candidates who share ARSA’s commitment to better regulation and a strong aviation maintenance sector.  But ARSA is prohibited from sending PAC information to members who haven’t opted in to receive it.

Please take a second to give us prior approval to talk to you about ARSA PAC.  Doing so in no way obligates you to support PAC.  It just opens the lines of communication.

Click here to give ARSA your consent today.

Biggs Visits Member Earp

Earp Aviation Vice President Bob Arnett (middle in blue shirt) hosted U.S. Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) (fourth from right) and other local dignitaries for a facility visit on April 20. Click the image to expand.

On April 20, U.S. Rep. Andy Biggs (R-Ariz.) visited Earp Aviation in Chandler, Arizona at the invitation of Earp Vice President Bob Arnett. Biggs, a member of the House Judiciary and Government Oversight & Reform Committees, was accompanied by Chandler Mayor Kevin Hartke, Chandler Chamber of Commerce President Terri Kimble and seven other Chamber board members.

“We discussed the ICA issue, workforce shortage and H.R. 7321 the so-called Safe Aircraft Maintenance Standards Act,” Arnett said. “I also gave him a copy of the letter ARSA sent dated July 30, 2021 to Transportation Secretary Buttigieg and FAA Administrator Dickson regarding maintenance manual access and ARSA’s state-by-state employment and economic impact document. Last but not least, I brought up the extension of the small business tax breaks which are set to expire come 2025 and the importance of keeping them in place for growth of the small businesses so they may add equipment and hire more workers.”

Facility visits raise your company and industry’s visibility. ARSA encourages all members to host a member of Congress or candidate this year. We make it easy. For more information, please contact ARSA.


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Make ARSA Training Work

ARSA’s online training program represents its most-valuable benefit to the aviation industry: knowledge gained through training and experience. The association’s team has turned its decades of work on behalf of aviation maintenance into more than 80 hours of on-demand content.

While sessions are available for registration at any time – ARSA member discounts available – companies can also incorporate the association’s training into their regular programs:

(1) Subscription. Make up-front, bulk purchases of training hours. The details of each subscription can be customized, including focus on specific subject areas (e.g., human factors) or options for specially-priced session access after the initial hours have been used.

(2) “Championing” a session. Guarantee a certain number of attendees for training in a particular topic that will also be made available for general registration. Variations include open registration for a live session (i.e., company personnel participate at the same time as general registrants) or a company-specific live event for which a recorded version (not including any company-specific information) is made available for on-demand registration.

(3) Tailored training. Contract ARSA’s management firm Obadal, Filler, MacLeod & Klein, P.L.C. to produce or modify training specific to your organization. The team can then re-record it (or offer it as a separate live session) for ARSA’s training program. Tailored programs are priced differently from ARSA’s hourly rate and are administered by OFM&K, which allows for a client engagement and related attorney-client privilege for all discussion.

Click here to go directly to the training platform (operated by ARSA’s management firm) and begin reviewing available sessions.

For more information about ARSA’s training program, review the menus below. If you have questions or would like to learn more about ways to integrate ARSA training into your own program, contact Vice President of Operations Brett Levanto (

Price: One-hour sessions are $75 for ARSA Members and $150 Non-Members. Classes with special pricing are indicated on this page. (Member prices provided to certain associations through reciprocal arrangements. Sessions will often be available at lower prices through bundles, coupons and other special opportunities.)
Government employees: Contact ARSA directly for auditing opportunities.
Registration: Registration and payment may be processed directly through the training platform/course catalog (free account creation required).
Technical questions and assistance: Click here for FAQ and technical support from training platform vendor.
Refunds: No refunds are granted for ARSA training sessions. When classes are canceled, registrants can choose from future courses of equal value. If a registrant is unable to attend a live session, their registration allows access to the on-demand, recorded version of the webinar.
IA Approval: A number of ARSA training sessions have been accepted for Inspection Authorization (IA) renewal credit. These sessions are denoted on their registration page with their FAA course acceptance number (in red).
Benefits: Registration for an ARSA-provided training session includes:
  • Access to the live class session on the scheduled date (if applicable).
  • Unlimited access to the on-demand, recorded version of the webinar to be made available after the live session is complete (or at time of purchase, for on-demand classes).
  • A copy of the presentation and all reference material with links to relevant resources and citations.
  • A certificate* upon completion of the session as well as any required test material.
*Only registered participants are eligible to receive a completion certificate for each session. Certificates are delivered automatically via email after the completion criteria – usually viewing the session and submitting an associated test – are met.
OFM&K Training Portal: All of ARSA's training sessions are provided through OFM&K's training portal. As the training provider of choice for ARSA and a trusted resource for the aviation community, the firm's training materials represent a vital tool for entities pursuing regulatory compliance and business success. All of the courses are administered via, which is not part of ARSA's website.

Complying with Part 145 – “Soup to Nuts” (Four Hours) Instructor: Sarah MacLeod Description: Specially recorded with a hand-picked audience for interactive discussion, this session thoroughly reviews 14 CFR part 145, discusses the application of the rule and overviews some practical implications of obtaining and maintaining a repair station certificate. Pricing Note: This is a four-hour session and is $300 for members and $600 for non-members. Click here to register and get access for 90 days.

Sessions Accepted for IA Renewal Credit Eight of ARSA's on-demand training sessions have been accepted by the FAA for Inspection Authorization renewal credit under 14 CFR § 65.93. Each session is currently available for registration and immediate access:Click here to purchase all eight sessions (plus one required prerequisite) at a “bundled” discount – let ARSA take care of your IA renewal requirements this year. Click here to purchase all eight sessions (plus one required prerequisite) at a “bundled” discount.

The following general subject areas are covered by sessions currently available in ARSA's training library. Search these and other topics directly via the online training portal (click here to get started).

Aircraft Parts

Audit Activism & Prophylactic Lawyering

Drug & Alcohol Testing

Human Factors

Instructions for Continued Airworthiness

Parts 21, 43, 65, 145 (and others)

Public Aircraft"Going Global" - International Regulatory Law

Grassroots Advocacy

Recordkeeping – "Finishing the Job with Proper Paperwork"

The Fourth Branch of Government (Administrative Agencies and Procedures)

Self Disclosure Programs and Practices

While sessions are available for registration at any time – ARSA member discounts available – companies can also incorporate the association's training into their regular programs:

(1) Subscription. Make up-front, bulk purchases of training hours. The details of each subscription can be customized, including focus on specific subject areas (e.g., human factors) or options for specially-priced session access after the initial hours have been used.

(2) “Championing” a session. Guarantee a certain number of attendees for training in a particular topic that will also be made available for general registration. Variations include open registration for a live session (i.e., company personnel participate at the same time as general registrants) or a company-specific live event for which a recorded version (not including any company-specific information) is made available for on-demand registration.

(3) Tailored training. Contract ARSA's management firm Obadal, Filler, MacLeod & Klein, P.L.C. to produce or modify training specific to your organization. The team can then re-record it (or offer it as a separate live session) for ARSA’s training program. Tailored programs are priced differently from ARSA’s hourly rate and are administered by OFM&K, which allows for a client engagement and related attorney-client privilege for all discussion.

For more information about ARSA's training program, review the menus below. If you have questions or would like to learn more about ways to integrate ARSA training into your own program, contact Vice President of Operations Brett Levanto (

The association’s training program is provided through Obadal, Filler, MacLeod & Klein, P.L.C., the firm that manages ARSA. To go directly to OFM&K’s online training portal, visit To learn more about the association’s training program and see course availability, visit

What training do you need? Contact ARSA to let the association know and help get it developed.


Part 21 Series

This session provides an overview of the aviation safety regulations governing design and production of civil aviation products and articles as well as airworthiness certification of civil aircraft.
Click here to register and get access for 90 days.

Design Approvals & Design Changes
This session reviews the elements necessary to obtain design approvals for civil aviation products, including type certificates, amended type certificates and supplemental type certificates. It will explain the requirements for obtaining approval of design changes to those certificates including the changed product rule. Finally, it will describe the design requirements for obtaining a parts manufacturer approval and technical standard order authorization, and for obtaining approval of design changes to those articles.
Click here to register and get access for 90 days.

Production Approvals
This session explains the requirements for obtaining a production approval for civil aviation products and articles as well as the elements of an FAA-approved quality system and the method for making revisions to that system. It also addresses the privileges and responsibilities of production approval holders including the issuance of airworthiness approvals and authorized release documents for aircraft engines, propellers and articles.
Click here to register and get access for 90 days.

Want all three sessions? Click here to  purchase them together and save.

Registration for an ARSA-provided training session includes:

  • Unlimited access for 90 days to the recording made available after the live session is complete.
  • A copy of the presentation and all reference material with links to relevant resources and citations.
  • A certificate upon completion of the class, as well as any test material.

The association’s training program is provided through Obadal, Filler, MacLeod & Klein, P.L.C., the firm that manages ARSA. To go directly to OFM&K’s online training portal, visit To learn more about the association’s training program and see course availability, visit


Election Law Basics

The midterms are coming! Lead by Christian A. Klein, this session provides business leaders with a basic understanding of federal election laws and regulations. Klein reviews permissible sources of campaign funds, contribution limits, company political action committees (PAC) and corporate engagement in political activity.

Click here to register and get access for 90 days.

Registration for an ARSA-provided training session includes:

  • Unlimited access for 90 days to the recording made available after the live session is complete.
  • A copy of the presentation and all reference material with links to relevant resources and citations.
  • A certificate upon completion of the class, as well as any test material.

The association’s training program is provided through Obadal, Filler, MacLeod & Klein, P.L.C., the firm that manages ARSA. To go directly to OFM&K’s online training portal, visit To learn more about the association’s training program and see course availability, visit


Regulatory Compliance Training

Test your knowledge of 14 CFR § 11.45, how to submit written comments.

Click here to download the training sheet.


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McHugh Brings New Perspective to ARSA Board

Alison McHugh, Vice President of Safety & Quality, FEAM AERO. Photo courtesy FEAM AERO.

On April 20, the ARSA board of directors elected Alison McHugh to fill the vacant seat previously held by Jet Center MFR General Manager Gary Hudnall.

McHugh is vice president of safety and quality at FEAM AERO. She holds two degrees from Embry Riddle, has both a mechanic’s certificate with airframe and powerplant ratings and a commercial pilot’s license, is on the adjunct faculty at Miami Dade College and was a member of the staff at the National Air Transportation Association.

The board embodies a broad range of international maintenance interests, with directors elected to represent specific industry segments. ARSA’s team had been considering options for new directors since Hudnall’s unexpected passing in October 2021. Since the general aviation market is protected by other members, the association selected McHugh to give line maintenance providers direct representation on the board.

FEAM is a leading provider of aircraft line maintenance services with 42 maintenance bases worldwide, including two hangar facilities, and more than 1,400 technicians and engineers. The company’s business includes line and base maintenance, technical training, global aircraft-on-ground support, and other technical services. FEAM holds approvals from multiple civil aviation authorities and proudly includes its ARSA membership on the “Approvals and Accreditations” section of its website.

“After months of searching, Alison presented herself as the perfect board candidate,” said ARSA Executive Vice President Christian A. Klein. “She was an outspoken participant in our Annual Conference in March, actively questioning panelists and speaking up for the industry’s future during a breakout session on technical career development. She wasn’t auditioning for board service, just leading on behalf of her company and industry. Regardless, after the event was over the choice [of her as a director nominee] was clear.”

The board agreed and voted unanimously to elect McHugh at the beginning of its April meeting. She participated in the remainder of the session, hearing reports on the health of the ARSA’s finances, membership development and its work on the industry’s behalf between January and March

“It was a busy week,” McHugh said after her election. “I’ve caught up on the nuances of ARSA’s work and helped more closely connect FEAM with the association. There’s a lot we can do to fully represent maintenance providers, especially those in the line maintenance category that may at times be overlooked. I’m looking forward to it.”

“Alison is so very much the right choice,” said ARSA Executive Director Sarah MacLeod. “She’s qualified, talented and will help the association be the voice of an industry that needs to improve its diversity and inclusion.”


Quick Question – The Dynamic Regulatory System

It’s been more than six months since the FAA unveiled its Dynamic Regulatory System and the agency is preparing to decommission the Flight Systems Information Management System (FSIMS). As is already the case for certification-related guidance, the contents of Order 8900.1 must be accessed via the DRS.

As reported in the August 2021 hotline, “the DRS is a comprehensive knowledge center that combines an ever-expanding number of document types from more than a dozen repositories into a single searchable application. It will keep growing.”

The FAA has asked for help from ARSA members to improve the resource. Provide feedback on your experience with the DRS by answering this month’s “quick question,” then review the steps suggested by the agency and ensure they are circulated through your organization.

If the embedded survey does not appear below, use the following URL to access the questionnaire in your browser:

Note: The survey below is in an embedded window and you may need to scroll down within the window to see/click the “Submit” button.

Click here to see what questions have been asked and answered…and keep a lookout for more.

For more information about this or any other question, contact Brett Levanto (

Utilizing the DRS

(1) Make sure is bookmarked on every computer in your facility and a regular stop for regulatory compliance questions. (EDITOR’S NOTE: The authors encourage you to make the DRS your first stop for questions, but graciously accepted the association’s reminder that members should “Ask ARSA First.”)

(2) Carefully review instructions available at

(3) Every time you use the system, consider the experience. How could it be better? Submit thoughts by clicking on “DRS Feedback” on the top banner of the site and submitting the form.


Welcome & Welcome Back – New & Renewing Members

ARSA’s members give the association life – its work on behalf of the maintenance community depends on the commitment of these organizations. Here’s to the companies that joined or renewed in April:

New Members

Airborne Maintenance & Engineering Services dba PEMCO World Air Services, R05
Avgroup, Inc., R01

Renewing Members

AEE-EMF, Inc. d.b.a. Aircraft Electrical Electronics, R01, 2009
All Nippon Airways Co., LTD, Assoc, 2001
Avionics Shop, Inc., R01, 2011
Aviation Communication & Surveillance Systems, LLC, R02, 2002
Cadorath Aerospace Lafayette, LLC, R03, 2005
EcoServices, LLC, R02, 2020
Harman’s Repair Station, Inc., R01, 2012
IAR Technical Services LLC, R02, 2017
L. J. Walch Co., Inc., R03, 1985
NAASCO Northeast Corporation, R02, 2002
Pac West Helicopters, Inc., R01, 2009
Piedmont Propulsion Systems, LLC, R03, 2011
PropWorks Propeller Systems, R02, 2021
Southern Air Repair, Corp., R01, 2016
Triumph Airborne Structures, LLC, Corp, 2003
Vibrant Corporation, R02, 2021


A Member Asked…

Q: My question continues an ongoing discussion of § 21.9(a)(6): “Fabrication by an appropriately rated certificate holder with a quality system, and consumed in the repair or alteration of a product or article in accordance with part 43”.

It’s my understanding person(s) fabricating parts under an approved part 145 quality control system the following provision(s) do not apply:

  • 120.1(c) “145 certificate holders performing safety sensitive functions”
  • 145.217 “Contract maintenance” (not considered a maintenance activity)

I believe the misinterpretation lies with the guidance provided under AC 43-18 and was hoping for a quick summary of the rules and possibly guidance material to help provide further clarification?

A: Let’s walk through this carefully since words and comma placement are important when reading “law.”

Part 21 is applicable to design activities (see section 21.1(a)(1)(i)), production activities (see section 21.1(a)(1)(ii)). It is not applicable to maintenance activities.

Section 21.9(a)(6) must be read along with paragraph (a), which combine to state:

(a) If a person knows, or should know, that a replacement or modification article is reasonably likely to be installed on a type-certificated product, the person may not produce that article unless it is…(6) Fabricated by an appropriately rated certificate holder with a quality system, and consumed in the repair or alteration of a product or article in accordance with part 43 of this chapter… (emphasis added.)

Appropriately rated certificate holders are those in § 43.3.

The quality system for a part 145 certificate holder is the one in section 145.211 incorporating the guidance in AC 43-18 (or better yet, incorporating the applicable elements of the quality system in § 21.137).

The fabrication must be for installation (consumption) during maintenance activities which can only be accomplished under part 43.

So, fabrication is not maintenance—that is clear from the fact that the “authority” for design and production is in part 21 and the ability for a maintenance provider to fabricate replacement articles without a production approval is in § 21.9.

If the making of a new part is still considered a “maintenance function” by some, they need to read the legal interpretations on the issue found here: d’Etremont (2006)

and here: McPhaul (2012)

and here: Freidman (2017)

Your other cites related to part 145 are irrelevant since fabrication is not maintenance at all, let alone a maintenance function. Maintenance is defined in § 1.1, which states that the word means “inspection, overhaul, repair, preservation, and the replacement of parts, but excludes preventive maintenance.” The definition does not include fabrication, the maintenance at issue is the replacement of the article fabricated by or at the behest of the “appropriately rated certificate holder” and installed as required by part 43.

I sure hope that helps…and by the way the fabrication quality system does NOT have to be “approved”—it just needs to be present and used to ensure that the articles being installed are “airworthy”, i.e., meet an approved design and are in a condition for safe operation.


Make ARSA’s Voice Your Own: Advertise

ARSA has a menu of advertising opportunities for, the hotline and the ARSA Dispatch. Take advantage of these great opportunities today to showcase your company, a new product or event. For more information go to


Stand Up for ARSA

In order to provide world-class resources for its members, the association depends on the commitment of the aviation community. By sponsoring events and activities, supporters can help ARSA’s work on behalf of repair stations to endure.

Need a place to start? For information about opportunities, contact Vice President of Operations Brett Levanto (


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ARSA strives to provide resources to educate the general public about the work of the association’s member organizations; should you need to provide a quick reference or introductory overview to the global MRO industry, please utilize

Anti-Viral Measures

For the use of its members and the larger aviation community, ARSA is maintaining this page as a resource for pandemic-related updates on policy initiatives and business needs. It is the association’s central point of communication on the topic

U.S./EU Maintenance Annex Guidance

See all of the association’s public updates since 2012 on the Maintenance Annex Guidance between the United States and European Union. The page focuses in particular on matters related to parts documentation issues arising since MAG Change 5 was issued in 2015.

Industry News Roundup

ARSA monitors media coverage on aviation maintenance to spread the word about the valuable role repair stations play globally by providing jobs and economic opportunities and in civic engagement. These are some of this month’s top stories highlighting the industry’s contributions. You can explore these stories through ARSA’s Dispatch news portal.


Industry Calendar

EBAA-EBACE2022 5/23-25/2022 Geneva, Switzerland
FAA-EASA International Aviation Safety Conference 6/14/-16-2022 Washington, DC
MRO BEER 6/15-16/2022 Istanbul, Turkey
Farnborough International Airshow 7/18-22/2022 Farnborough, UK
LABACE 8/9-11/2022 Sao Paulo, Brazil
MRO Asia-Pacific 9/20-22/2022 Singapore
NBAA Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition (NBAA-BACE) 10/18-20/2022 San Antonio, TX
EASA Rotorcraft and VTOL Symposium 11/16-18/2022 Koelnmesse, Germany
ARSA Annual Conference 3/14-17/2023 Arlington, VA
AEA International Convention & Trade Show 4/24-27/2023 Orlando, FL
Dubai Airshow 11/12-16/2023 DWC, Dubai Airshow Site
AEA International Convention & Trade Show 3/19-22/2024 Dallas, TX

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the hotline is the monthly publication of the Aeronautical Repair Station Association (ARSA), the not-for-profit international trade association for certificated repair stations. It is for the exclusive use of ARSA members and federal employees on the ARSA mailing list. For a membership application, please call 703.739.9543 or visit For information about previous editions, submit a request through This material is provided for educational and informational purposes only. It does not constitute legal, consulting, tax or any other type of professional advice. Law, regulations, guidance and government policies change frequently. While ARSA updates this material, we do not guarantee its accuracy. In addition, the application of this material to a particular situation is always dependent on the facts and circumstances involved. The use of this material is therefore at your own risk. All content in the hotline, except where indicated otherwise, is the property of ARSA. This content may not be reproduced, distributed or displayed, nor may derivatives or presentations be created from it in whole or in part, in any manner without the prior written consent of ARSA. ARSA grants its members a non-exclusive license to reproduce the content of the hotline. Employees of member organizations are the only parties authorized to receive a duplicate of the hotline. ARSA reserves all remaining rights and will use any means necessary to protect its intellectual property.

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