Daily Archives: July 17, 2013

Pompeo’s aviation bill triumphs in unanimous House vote

The U.S. House passed Rep. Mike Pompeo’s Small Airplane Revitalization Act of 2013 on Tuesday with a 411-0 vote – astonishing in the context of so much Capitol Hill dysfunction and dissent. It was just two months ago that the Wichita Republican introduced the bill, which has the support of the Machinists union as well as aviation industry groups. It grew out of the recommendations of a Federal Aviation Administration rule-making panel composed of aviation experts and industry representatives. Politico, as an example of what the measure aims to replace, noted that current FAA regulations specify the type of Bunsen burner that aviation companies must use when conducting flammability tests. Pompeo said in a statement Tuesday: “These new streamlined regulations will decrease costs, increase safety and improve global competitiveness.” That means the new rules should benefit Wichita’s planemakers and economy. But first the bill needs to pass the Senate, where it’s being championed by Sens. Amy Klobuchar, D-Minn., and Lisa Murkowski, R-Alaska. Congratulations to Pompeo for showing that Congress still can work as intended when it wants to and the cause is right.

New, better way to investigate officer-involved deaths

Local authorities have taken a good step in the wake of last week’s 32-hour standoff on South Seneca, which ended with the shooting death of suspect Jared Lee Woosypiti. The investigation of the standoff will be led by Reno County Sheriff Randy Henderson, in what he called a new regional “unified approach in working officer-involved shootings” with a goal of having “the highest level of integrity.” Wichita Police Chief Norman Williams, Sedgwick County Sheriff Jeff Easter and Sedgwick County District Attorney Marc Bennett have been involved in the new approach. It won’t answer all the concerns of those whose loved ones have died in officer-involved shootings, or address their call for a citizen board to review such cases. But having another jurisdiction lead the investigation introduces some independence and objectivity into the process.