WASHINGTON, DC, February 12, 2003 – The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) stated that the Department of Justice (DOJ) will publish a rule tomorrow establishing the process by which aliens seeking first time flight training in large aircraft will undergo a comprehensive background check. The Aviation and Transportation Security Act (ATSA), signed into law on November 19, 2001, mandated background checks on aliens seeking flight training in large aircraft. However, until now, the Department of Justice had no process for conducting the required checks, preventing aliens from receiving flight training in the U.S.
“Although we are disappointed it has taken 15 months to arrive at the point where we are today, we are pleased the Department of Justice finally developed a process for conducting background checks,” said GAMA president Ed Bolen. “We are also pleased that the DOJ accepted a number of GAMA recommendations for streamlining the process.”
Last week, testifying at a hearing of the Senate Subcommittee on Aviation, Bolen brought the DOJ’s failure to establish a process for conducting background checks to the attention of Senators calling the 15- month delay “inexcusable”.