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Aviation and Spaceports Office

Aviation and Spaceports Office / Frequently Asked Questions

Frequently Asked Questions

Aviation and Spaceports Office
  1. What should I do if I see suspicious activity on or around an airport?
  2. How can I receive a Florida Airport Directory or a Florida Aeronautical Chart?
  3. Where can I get information about Florida's airparks?
  4. Does the state license pilots or aircraft?
  5. Do I have to pay Florida taxes if I buy an aircraft in another state?
  6. What is the state's role with respect to private airports?
  7. Do I need a license to keep and operate my plane on private property in Florida?
  8. Do I need a license to land a helicopter in Florida?
  9. Who do I contact about an airport that I have purchased or I am going to purchase?
  10. Who can I call about an airline that recently lost my luggage on a flight in Florida?
  11. Who can I call about an airplane that is flying too low over my house?
  12. Who can I call about the noise caused by the airplanes flying over my house?
  13. Who can I call to object to a tower planned for construction?
  14. Where can I find a list of job openings in Florida for aviation-related employment?
  15. Does Florida inspect and/or license any private-use airports within the state?
  16. What does airport "site approval" mean?
  17. What does airport "registration" mean?
  18. What are the legislative authority and rule-making references for approval and registration?
  19. What are "general" site approval criteria?
  20. When should site approval be obtained?
  21. What types of airports are "exempt"?
  22. How do I apply for airport site approval?
  23. How long is the site approval process?
  24. Why does the process take 45 days and why is there a possibility of more delay?
  25. What are "specific" site approval criteria?
  26. Where do I send all of this in formation?
  27. When do I register a "new" private airport?
  28. How will I know if a petition was filed?
  29. How long is airport site approval valid?
  30. Why would FDOT revoke site approval?
  31. When do I register an "existing" private airport?
  32. What if airport registration is not done?
  33. What is the option for a private airport to request FDOT inspection and licensing?
  34. What are airport licensing standards?
  35. Who is responsible for airport safety?

What should I do if I see suspicious activity on or around an airport?


Immediately call the nearest law enforcement authorities to report your information on suspicious activity. Be prepared to give as much detailed information, as possible. Avoid placing yourself or others in danger.


How can I receive a Florida Airport Directory or a Florida Aeronautical Chart?


For copies of these FDOT products, please submit your name and address in a request to the following:

Florida Airports Directory - 2013 (12.9 MB in PDF) To request a printed copy of the directory, click here


Where can I get information about Florida's airparks?


Information about all aviation facilities in the State of Florida is available in the Florida Airport Directory


Does the state license pilots or aircraft?


Florida does not license or register pilots or aircraft, except aircraft used for agricultural or mosquito control purposes. Pilot and aircraft licensing by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), however, is a compliance requirement enforceable by the state. Aircraft used for agricultural or mosquito control purposes are required to register annually with the Florida Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services.


Do I have to pay Florida taxes if I buy an aircraft in another state?


If you bring an aircraft into Florida that you have owned for more than six months, you should not have to pay a fee. However, a sales tax is required on the transfer of aircraft ownership within Florida. For more information, please see the website on Sales Tax and Use Tax on Aircraft Owners and Purchasers provided by the Florida Department of Revenue


What is the state's role with respect to private airports?


Private-use airports in the State of Florida are NOT inspected and licensed. Newly proposed private airports must be reviewed for airport site approval by the state in coordination with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Once site approval has been granted, the airport sponsor must then complete an online registration process. Existing private airports are required to update their registration at least every two years.


What do I need to keep and operate my plane on private property in Florida?


You need a State of Florida site approval and airport registration to base any aircraft on your property.


Do I need a license to land a helicopter in Florida?

Helicopter pilots are cautioned to comply with local ordinances concerning flight operations, at all times. Florida would require a state-issued heliport or helistop site approval and registration.


Who do I contact about an airport that I have purchased or I am going to purchase?


If you have purchased a public-use airport, please contact Mr. Jason Myers at 850-414-4500 in the Tallahassee Aviation and Spaceports Office. . If you have purchased a private-use airport, please contact Ms. Alice Lammert at 850-414-4500 in the Tallahassee Aviation and Spaceports Office.


Who can I call about an airline that recently lost my luggage on a flight in Florida?


The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) 24-hour Consumer Hotline provides general public information on issues such as aircraft child restraints, carry-on baggage, and other FAA monitored topics. You may call their toll-free number at 800-322-7873.


Who can I call about an airplane that is flying too low over my house?


The FAA's Flight Standards District Offices (FSDO) serve the aviation industry and general public on matters relating to certification and operation of general aviation aircraft, including allegation of unsafe flight operations.


Who can I call about the noise caused by the airplanes flying over my house?


Many commercial service airports, as well as some general aviation airports have personnel assigned responsibility for managing environmental noise issues, including the establishment of aircraft noise abatement procedures, documentation of noise levels using computer modeling techniques, and support for noise mitigation efforts by a noise advisory committee comprised of local community participants. Please contact your local airport to report noise concerns or complaints to their designated representative or, if available, ask how you might participate in local airport noise advisory committee activities.


Who can I call to object to a tower planned for construction?


Federal and state regulations, laws, and rules are applicable and enforceable to protect the airspace near public-use airports that may have flight operations adversely affected by proposed construction of towers, buildings, or any other structure that exceeds federal obstruction standards. By law, private-use airports are not provided this airspace protection by FAA or FDOT. Additionally, many counties and incorporated municipalities have adopted their own airport zoning ordinances to assume responsibility from the state. Please see the section in this site related to Airspace Obstructions for more details.

For initial inquiry, please contact the manager of the nearest public-use airport potentially affected by the proposed structure or a representative of you local government planning office to review any available correspondence concerning the FAA's aeronautical study and determination about the planned structure. Inquiries may also be directed to the FDOT Airspace and Land Use Manager, as shown below:

Aviation Office
Florida Department of Transportation
605 Suwannee Street, MS 46
Tallahassee, Florida 32399-0450
Mr. Sergey Kireyev
850-414-4500 Phone
850-414-4508 Facsimile
Sergey.Kireyev@dot.state.fl.us


Where can I find a list of job openings in Florida for aviation-related employment?


The State of Florida website at http://www.floridajobs.org/ provides extensive opportunities for job seekers in our state to research and locate available jobs, including listings of employment with the Florida Department of Transportation.


Does Florida inspect and/or license any private-use airports within the state?


All private airports in the State of Florida must comply with "site approval" and "registration" requirements. There is no requirement for inspection and licensing of private-use airports, either private or public-owned. However, airports open to public-use, private or public-owned, must comply with Florida's "inspection" and "licensing" requirements. An option exists, however, allowing for inspection and licensing of private-use airports that meet certain state specified criteria. There are no fees for these services.


What does airport "site approval" mean?


Site approval is the first step of a two step process for anyone to establish a "new" airport in the state for private use. This step examines criteria established by the Aviation and Spaceports Office of the Florida Department of Transportation (FDOT) to determine the feasibility of a new airport at the requested location.


What does airport "registration" mean?


Registration is a requirement for anyone desiring to operate a private-use airport within the State of Florida. Registration is the second step of a two step process for anyone to establish a "new" airport for private use in the state. All owners of private airports in Florida are required to have data and information on file in the Florida Aviation Database related to the geographic location of the airport site, data for each runway, and airport owner and/or operator contact information.


What are the legislative authority and rule-making references for approval and registration?


Chapter 330, Florida Statutes, "Regulation of Aircraft, Pilots, and Airports"
Chapter 14-60, Florida Administrative Code, "Airport Licensing, Registration, and Airspace Protection"


What are "general" site approval criteria?


FDOT Aviation and Spaceports Office will grant site approval if it is satisfied that the proposal meets the following criteria:
  1. Adequate area has been allocated.
  2. The proposed airport will conform with all registration requirements and will also comply with all applicable local regulations or zoning requirements.
  3. Airports, local governments, and property owners affected by the proposal have all been notified and their submitted comments have been given adequate consideration.
  4. Safe aircraft traffic patterns can be established at the proposed airport with all existing airports and also all approved, future airport sites in the vic inity of the proposed airport.

When should site approval be obtained?


Florida law states that, unless an airport is exempt from this requirement, the owner or lessee of any proposed airport shall obtain approval of the airport site from the FDOT prior to site acquisition, construction, or establishment of the proposed airport.


What types of airports are "exempt"?


The law also states the following type airports are exempt from its provisions:
  1. An airport owned or operated by the United States.
  2. An ultralight landing area located more than 5nm from public or military airport, except any ultralight landing area with more than 10 ultralights.
  3. A helistop used by mosquito control or emergency services, not to include areas where permanent facilities are installed, such as hospital sites.
  4. Seasonally-based aircraft airport sites for aerial application or spraying of crops, as stated in the law.
  5. Any body of water, land, or structure that facilitates private seaplane use.

How do I apply for airport site approval?


As part of new legislative requirements, FDOT has created an internet-based, interactive website for site approval at www.floridaprivateairport.com. Instructions are shown on the website. However, a private-use airport owner must first have an established e-mail address in order to receive notification of a "user ID" and "password", which are required to enter this controlled access site. The process is very user-friendly. However, FDOT recommends reviewing requirements in advance to be able to readily complete the process. The airport owner is required to certify that all specific requirements have been accomplished and that the owner will adhere to other stated provisions.


How long is the site approval process?


FDOT will immediately examine airport site approval information submitted by the applicant on the interactive website. Incomplete information will preclude approval and will result in notification to the applicant of existing deficiencies to be corrected. Delays in the process can be avoided by reviewing site approval criteria in advance. Be prepared when beginning the interactive site approval application process to avoid any delays. Applications that are complete and that meet all criteria will have an airport site approval order issued by FDOT. From the date of issuance, the site approval will be effective 45 days later, unless a petition, objecting to the order, is filed.


Why does the process take 45 days and why is there a possibility of more delay?


The 45 day delay is necessary to meet statutory requirement for public review. An airport site approval order may also be further delayed pending outcome of an administrative hearing caused by a petition, filed in objection to the order. Please see Chapter 14-60 Florida Administrative Code for criteria.


What are "specific" site approval criteria?


In addition to the "general" criteria above, "specific" criteria for airport site approval include the following:
  1. Property Rights - The private airport applicant must have legal ownership, l ease agreement, or owners' consent for all jointly owned airport property.
  2. Facility Diagram - Posse ss a detailed scale drawing of the proposed facility.
  3. Geodetic Position - Possess USGS or other map with airport site plotted to nearest second latitude and longitude.
  4. Location Map - Have an 8.5 x 11 inch map or sketch of site with landmarks.
  5. Aviation Facilities - Notify adjacent airports of the proposed new airport.
  6. Local Government - Airport must be consistent with applicable city/county government zoning requirements.
  7. Adjacent Property - Nearby property owners' concerns must be considered.
  8. Public Notice - Provide public notice of intention to locate proposed airport.
  9. Waste Sites - Proposed airports cannot be located near solid waste sites.
  10. Traffic Pattern - All air traffic patterns must be coordinated with existing and other planned airports within 3 miles.
  11. Safety Factors - Airport design must be compatible with planned aircraft performance and airport operations.
  12. Security Factors - Airport owner must provide appropriate security measures.
  13. FAA Approval - The airport proposal must have been submitted to the FAA and FAA airspace approval obtained.

Where do I send all of this in formation?


Do not send the information, but retain it for your personal records in order to be able to respond to future local, state, or federal inquiry about your private airport.


When do I register a "new" private airport?


For a new private airport, registration can be completed immediately after all of the following steps: the airport site approval order has been issued by the FDOT, the airport site approval order effectiveness date has passed, and no petition was filed with FDOT. However, if a petition was filed and a subsequen t administrative hearing found in favor of airport site approval, registration may be completed immediately thereafter. On the other hand, if the administrative hearing resulted in denying the airport site approval, airport registration may not be accomplished and the airport will not be allowed to operate in the state.


How will I know if a petition was filed?


If a petition for an administrative hearing is filed, FDOT will immediately notify the private airport applicant. The effective date of the airport site approval order or its denial will be determined by the outcome of the administrative hearing.


How long is airport site approval valid?


An airport site approval order remains valid for a period of two years from its effective date, unless it has been revoked by FDOT. A site approval order can be extended for subsequent periods of two years


Why would FDOT revoke site approval?


FDOT would revoke site approval, if:
  1. Airport site has been abandoned.
  2. Site has not been developed as an airport within two (2) years of the order date or its development does not comply with any condition that is specified in the site approval order.
  3. Aircraft have operated on the site prior to private air port registration, except as may be required for an in-flight emergency.
  4. Airport site is no longer usable for aviation purposes due to physical or legal changes in conditions.

When do I register an "existing" private airport?


Having completed airport site approval, existing private airports will only require periodic registration. Airport registration can be completed any time and is valid for a period of two (2) years. All existing airport data and contact information, as of October 1, 2003, has been entered into the Florida Aviation Database. All of these airports have an initial registration valid until October 1, 2005. However, just like new airports after site approval, all existing private airports are required also to access the FDOT private airport registration and site approval website at www.floridaprivateairport.com to update and certify the airport data and contact information applicable to the private airport. Completion of this process will automatically extend the period of registration for two (2) years. Owners are encouraged to access the site to update data and information at anytime and for any reason, i.e. change in phone or fax number, e-mail address, ownership, length or width of runway, runway addition, or runway surface, etc. Site access is available for data entry and certification at all times, except for short periods of computer maintenance. Again, there is no fee for this service.


What if airport registration is not done?


FDOT would revoke or refuse to allow any private airport registration or re-registration, if it determines that any of the following conditions exist or apply:
  1. Airport registration has not been accomplished within 15 days after the date of expiration.
  2. Airport site has been abandoned.
  3. Airport does not comply with any specified condition of site approval.
  4. Airport site is no longer usable for aviation purposes due to physical or legal changes in conditions.

What is the option for a private airport to request FDOT inspection and licensing?


As stated, Florida law allows private airports to request inspection and licensing in lieu of registration:
  1. Private airports having ten or more based aircraft may request this option.
  2. Standards by which the private airport is held accountable in the inspection and licensing process are the same as for all airports licensed by the state.
  3. For new private airports, site approval and registration must be completed as previously described before the option request will be addressed by FDOT.
  4. Private airports licensed according to this exception will be considered as "private airports" in all other respects and shall not be open for "public" use.
  5. FDOT will revert an y private airport from licensed to registration category, if the airport is unable to comply with licensing standards or maintain the required number of based aircraft.
  6. Any private airport licensed under this option may later request in writing to the FDOT that the airport be reverted from licensed to registration category.

What are airport licensing standards?


All licensed airports, public or private are required to meet the same standards described in Chapter 14-60 FAC. These standards are all consistent with airport design and operational safety standards found in FAA regulations and guidelines. Please see Chapter 14-60 Florida Administrative Code for standards.


Who is responsible for airport safety?


The owner is responsible for all safety and security issues at a private airport. Registered airports will not be subject to state inspections or licensing standards. Owners should consult state or federal guidelines or professional consultants.