U.S. Representative Frank A. LoBiondo (NJ-02) today introduced legislation that would restrict popular taxpayer-paid aviation demonstration teams from performing at international air shows. In light of the tightened budget at the Department of Defense (DoD) that has grounded the teams this year from participating in air shows such as the annual Atlantic City Air Show or Millville Air Show, LoBiondo introduced the "Aviation Teams Helping Our Municipalities' Economies (AT HOME) Act of 2013" to ensure domestic performances are prioritized above requests from abroad should the teams resume performing..
"At this time of the year, families and businesses are typically looking at the summer calendar and making plans to attend the annual air shows that light up the South Jersey skies. Hundreds of thousands of spectators come to see the magnificence of the Blue Angels, Thunderbirds, Golden Knights and other aviation demonstration teams which translate into millions of tourism dollars and a positive impact for the host community," said LoBiondo, a member of the House Armed Services Committee. "While grounded for the 2013 season, it is my hope that these teams will not be on the runway for too long. And when they do once again take off, I think it is important for U.S. military demonstration teams to focus on air shows here at home which are both a sense of great pride and local tremendous economic boost."
LoBiondo's legislation would put a two year moratorium on the Department of Defense from using taxpayer funds for performances at air shows abroad. The bipartisan legislation, H.R. 1721, was introduced with Representatives Bob Brady (PA-01) and Walter Jones (NC-03).