Wednesday, June 16, 2010

FAA Out to Get Darby Aviation?

Darby Aviation, a company offering charter flights around the US, has gone on record as saying the FAA is out to get them. After twice revoking their license in the past five years, the FAA is certainly no ally of the Colbert County business, but would an arm of the Federal Government really have it in for Darby, dba Alpha Jet?

After Darby Aviation first lost its license in 2005 due to actions of its agent Platinum Aviation, the Muscle Shoals business underwent inspections by the NTSB, OSIP, and NASIP in order to have its legal standing restored. At that time, governing bodies found the Birmingham Field Office of the FAA was equally culpable in the fraud that resulted in Platinum Aviation officials serving sentences in Federal prison.

According to Darby's attorney Deanna Weidner, this finding resulted in a reprimand for the Birmingham Flight Service District Office. Weidner, of the Birmingham legal firm of Anderson & Weidner, has stated the field office initiated the current license revocation in retaliation. The FAA's Birmingham office has documented its April 8 decision with a laundry list of charges against Darby, including positing that neither Darby's chief pilot nor Director of Operations was qualified to hold such positions.

The charges and counter charges are still working their way through the system, but in the mean time Darby Aviation if obviously suffering. The Hiller Group, the major supplier of aviation fuels in the western United States, has sued Darby for almost 39K in unpaid services.

For Darby Aviation's complete response to the FAA charges, you may visit their site. Interestingly, the site seems to have been erected in response to this current crisis. One wonders if, like Southern Sash, this Darby company is about to become obsolete.


We haven't reported on Leighton and its ongoing problems with Mayor LaWayne Harrison in some time. According to one source, Harrison recently ejected a reporter from a town council meeting. We'll be having an update shortly.


US 43 work on schedule? According to Alabama Department of Transportation officials, the second leg of widening this major artery in Lauderdale County will begin in 2014. The original plan was to have work completed in Alabama at the same time the project was finished in Tennessee--that would have been approximately three years ago. Ah, well, schedules change with the administration in Alabama.