A couple of things to consider this year


Once again a new year is upon us and I hope you had a relaxing and enjoyable Holiday Season. I would like to mention a couple of things for you to consider in the next month or two: the upcoming Director elections and the eCATS program.

In my June 2011 column I told you about the Governance review that your Board went through during the previous 12 months. The details are in my June column but the bottom line is the Board has redefined its committee structure and specified detailed terms of reference in order to better handle the governance affairs of COPA and has more clearly defined the role of the Directors in our nineregions. These nine regions are:

*Newfoundland and Labrador (1 Director)

*The Maritimes (PEI, Nova Scotia and New Brunswick) (2 Directors)

Quebec (2 Directors)

Southern Ontario (3 Directors)

*Northern Ontario (1 Director)

*Manitoba and Nunavut (1 Director)

*Saskatchewan (1 Director)

*Alberta and Northwest Territories (2 Directors)

British Columbia and Yukon Territory (2 directors)

I’m telling you this because 2012 is an election year in six of these nine regions (those marked with *). If you live in one of these regions I want you to give a little thought to the job of being a volunteer COPA Director. Is this something you feel you might be interested in doing for four years? Can you think of someone you know who might make a good COPA Director? This is an opportunity to give back to your fellow aviators and to support the organization that protects your freedom to fly.

The Governance Committee of the Board is preparing the Call for Election that will appear in the March issue of COPA Flight with all the details. At this time I just want to get you thinking about it in the hope of seeing a number of candidates coming forward in each of the regions having an election.

In recent years many of our regional Director elections have had neither a good number of candidates nor a good voter turnout. Often there are not even enough candidates to hold an election. Personally, and for the good of the organization, I would really like to see that change.

So stir up some discussion among your pilot friends and within your COPA Flights, or Flying Clubs, about who should represent your region on the Board and represent COPA in your region. Then be sure to cast your ballot through our on-line voting process. Your vote does count! Look for all the details in this issue and on the website.

The second item on my mind is the eCATS program. This has been discussed in various articles in COPA Flight over the past couple of years. See my November 2009 column on the COPA website for full details about eCATS and why you should be using it.

The purpose of the eCATS website is to gather information from you about how much flying you do and how much you spend on aviation. When enough data has been collected Transport Canada will be able to provide statistics to help build an economic footprint for general aviation in Canada. This is needed to convince the politicians that we are an important economic generator, and that GA airports and a national GA policy are needed.

I remind you of this now because the data is collected on an annual basis for the previous year. So January is a great time to log on to the eCATS website and enter your activity for last year. This is entirely voluntary but it is important and I am personally every aircraft owner to take the time to do this each year. It only takes 30 minutes of your time once a year. See my November 2009 column for all the details. You can find the eCATS web site at: http://www.tc.gc.ca/pol/en/ecats/genaviation/ga.htm or by searching “tc/ecats” on Google. Once there click on “eCATS/GA – Data Collection” on the left side of the page.

Have a great year and keep that prop spinning!