Recommends Support For Programs Such As Build-A-Plane, Real
World Design Challenge
The Aerospace States Association (ASA) ... a group comprised of
the Lt. Governors of several states with extensive aerospace
interests or the Governor's desingees ... has written a letter to
President Obama to seek a stronger recognition of the states’
role in the success of national aerospace policies and strategies.
The group reminds the President that the U.S. aerospace industry is
a key employer in their states. With almost $81 billion in exports
and a positive trade balance of nearly $49 billion, the continued
health of this industry is significant to U.S. economic growth. In
addition, many states and commercial aerospace companies are making
significant investments in launch facilities, aerospace
manufacturing facilities, and other aerospace-related enterprise
that will help America maintain its global leadership.
"We suggest at least four ways that states can partner with the
federal government to accomplish national goals," said Alaska Lt.
Governor Mead Treadwell (pictured), Chair of ASA. "We believe that
America’s leadership in aerospace and aerospace exports
depends upon policies of the states, as well as the national
government, and that together we can foster a national recognition
of the NSP and NSSS stated goals of aerospace leadership. To this
end, we suggest a Memorandum of Understanding or joint
announcement, in which the White House and states agree to work
together toward maintaining U.S. aerospace leadership. Such an
announcement would make our partnership clear to the nation.
"Five of our member states have developed launch facilities, yet
the role of states are not mentioned in either the NSP or NSSS
(though the policies do recognize commercial companies, federal
agencies and even foreign governments). We believe the launch sites
in Alaska, California, Florida, New Mexico and Virginia are
essential to realizing several goals of the NSP including lowering
launch costs, relying more on the commercial sector, and achieving
resilience and responsive space capabilities. In recognition of
this fact, we urge the Administration to issue a directive or to
add language to the Space Transportation Policy that encourages
federal agencies to partner directly with state space agencies in
pursuit of NSP goals.
"Your policies make very strong note of the value of STEM
education. ASA is active in support of aerospace education programs
including the Real World Design Challenge (RWDC) and Build A Plane.
We appreciate the fact that you’ve entertained RWDC winners
at the White House, and hope that continues as an ongoing
tradition. We request that you further engage state government in
your interagency work to promote STEM education, in order to
enhance our mutual outreach capability.
"Your policies recognize the importance of science and
technology to America’s leadership in space and aviation. We
believe that states’ aerospace research, development and test
infrastructure is key to this leadership, and we urge you to
further engage state government in your interagency work to support
and grow this infrastructure."
The ASA says in its letter that these four suggestions would
include states as equal and legitimate partners in meeting U.S.
aerospace goals. It also allows the federal government to leverage
states’ resources. Aerospace states are committed to
investing state funds to recapitalize U.S. launch infrastructure,
to providing tax credits, prizes and other incentives to expand
aerospace industry opportunities and associated economic growth,
and to educating our youth to become the next generation of
ASA was formed in 1993 to promote a state-based perspective in
federal aerospace policy development and to support state aerospace
initiatives that enhance economic development opportunities and
student/teacher education outreach including the RWDC. It maintains
direct ties to the executive branches of state governments
throughout the nation. The dialogue between state Lt. Governors and
the administration will begin at ASA’s annual meeting in
Washington, D.C. on March 20, 2012 at 0815 EST in room 2325 of the
Rayburn House Office Building.