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Glen Buckley and Australian small business -V- CASA

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Glen Buckley and Australian small business -V- CASA

Old 22nd Jun 2019, 02:39
  #101 (permalink)  
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silence was the reply

Originally Posted by thunderbird five
Delete the "probably".
For what it is worth my 2c

It is common in various sorts of administration, including government, to not respond to "difficult" questions in the hope that they will go away, and in any case, a non response by a bureacrat is not career threatening. Politicians are even worse, with not answering the question, or answering a different question being common ploys.

As a lawyer once advised me, the only way to get attention is to take someone to court. Justice should prevail in your case, but logic and fairness don't count.

Even the honkys are going to struggle, and that's with 1/3 of their population prepared to demonstrate.

Perhaps focus on individuals in the public service by persisting with legally appropriate "harassment", and keep your energy high without doing in your own head.

Good luck.

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Old 25th Jun 2019, 08:44
  #102 (permalink)  
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HE WHO CALLS THE SHOTS. In the '60s I had occasion to launch an appeal against refusal by DCA (the Department of Civil Aviation) to issue a medical certificate. (I was seeking an exemption to the uncorrected visual acuity standard.) Seeing DCA had knocked me back, I put my detailed arguments to a succession of Ministers for Civil Aviation. (From Paltridge to Swartz to Cotton).. All of these appeals were summarily rejected. After two years of frustration I made an appointment to see the Director-General of Civil Aviation. Ushered into the office of Donald Anderson, he offered me a seat, saying "So you're man who has been bothering the minister. Well firstly, it is I who decides who can or cannot do anything to do with civil aviation in this country. Not the Minister. Now I'll just call Jim Harper in, who oversees operations." Duly, Jim Harper advised a flight test without visual correction. (To simulate loss of both pairs of specs.) After which DCA granted me an exemption . Two years later the standard changed, so that a number of exemptions were no longer in force. ("The answer my friend is pissing in the wind . . .the answer is pissing in the wind . .')
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Old 25th Jun 2019, 16:44
  #103 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by Sunfish
comment inappropriate, reported. I’m concerned about stress levels here....
Refered to CASA for a check of affects of said Stress Levels.
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Old 26th Jun 2019, 01:05
  #104 (permalink)  
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Letter sent to Mr Carmody 21/06

Dear Mr Shane Carmody,

There are no regulatory breaches. There are no safety concerns expressed by CASA.

CASAs actions have placed significant restrictions on my ability to trade and that has been repeatedly identified to CASA, as has the associated commercial impact. Craig Martin will be the Subject Matter Expert (SME) within CASA.

Within a week, CASA will make yet another decision to allow continuing operations through another temporary approval, or in fact, close the operation down. I don’t need to outline the enormous organisational instability that brings to the staff, and my ability to retain them, to customers, students, members and suppliers. These “temporary approvals” have now continued for 8 months and understandably bought the business to its knees. The staff and I are exhausted and drained, so is the business.

My Key Personnel must now make decisions about their own employment options, and that impacts on continuing operations amongst the group, with the associated consequences on businesses, staff, and suppliers.

To bring this absurd matter to a close it simply needs one decent human being, acting in a well-intentioned manner, to make a good decision. It is that simple.

It needs one person to give me 3 hours of their time to tell my side of the story.

It then needs that same person to spend a further 3 hours revising the Regulatory Philosophy, the functions of CASA, the enforcement manual, the Public Service Commission website, the definition of unconscionable conduct, the PGPA Act, the Ministers Statement of Expectations on CASA, and a familiarity with Administrative Law.

It needs that same well-intentioned person, to then seriously contemplate what it means to operate under the Australian Coat of Arms that will be proudly displayed throughout every CASA office. Reflect on the substance of it, the history behind it, the standards, ethics, governance and integrity that is conveyed by having the privilege to operate under it.

Then simply arrive at a decision.

As you are aware my preference is to resolve these matters through well intentioned face to face discussion. That is the most effective way to resolve any dispute. However, I have had the opportunity to receive some industry funded and substantive legal guidance on my matter. This meeting was initiated by someone in Industry, and I did not pay for the consultation. This firm does not provide litigation funding, and that necessitates me seeking support from wider industry, should I elect to continue.

At this stage there is no obligation on my behalf to proceed.

If I do: The first stage is a relatively straightforward process costing approximately $50,000. This would provide a robust and detailed overview of the validity of the claim, for both Industry and CASA to consider and would provide full transparency to both parties. On production of the report perhaps I could have the opportunity to meet with CASA again. The case would be based around CASAs failure to deliver clear and concise aviation safety standards, and the effects of that failure on safety and industry, as evidenced by my experience, and no doubt many others. I am fully satisfied that in fact, CASA have failed to achieve “clear and concise aviation safety standards”. That is the root cause of every one of my current issues, and in fact the wider industry’s.

I am fully satisfied that 5 personnel within CASA have acted inappropriately, and in my opinion unlawfully, although I respect that that needs to be determined. My hope is that you could respond indicating if there is a potential change of stance within CASA and a willingness to genuinely resolve the matter via a well-intentioned decision maker that you nominate.


Glen Buckley.

Last edited by glenb; 26th Jun 2019 at 01:08. Reason: making aword document format on pprune
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Old 26th Jun 2019, 07:09
  #105 (permalink)  
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Time is on CASAs side.
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Old 26th Jun 2019, 10:30
  #106 (permalink)  
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Good on yer Sunny, Harry and Michigan J for taking my tongue in cheek posts so seriously. Get a grip guys.
But seriously, who hasn’t been frustrated to the nth degree by fort fumble in the past and the corruption and incompetence within? I support Glen 100% and I wish him a speedy and just resolution to APTA’s problems with the “regulator” and the despicable officers therein.
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Old 2nd Jul 2019, 05:51
  #107 (permalink)  
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Letter to Mr Carmody 2/7/19

Dear Mr Carmody,

Prior to proceeding with the contents of this letter, it is important that I clarify some important matters.

The business has been operating for 15 years delivering well intentioned, safe and highly compliant flight training. CASA records will support that contention.

Flying schools conducting a practice referred to as ‘sharing an Air Operators Certificate” is a practice that has been going on for many decades within the flight training industry. The practice has been conducted with the full knowledge, consent, and support of CASA. This cannot be refuted.

There were deficiencies in those arrangements, as often the organisations operated independently and in their own interests.

APTA was the first time in Australia that the deficiencies in the existing practice were addressed. This cannot be refuted, as CASA personnel worked side by side with APTA personnel in designing the purpose built system that we now have. We attended to over 600 CASA requirements, and in fact we were one of the few schools that met the CASA stipulated deadline of September 1 2017. APTA was approved by CASA in April 2017 and has been operating in that format for more than two years. In November 2017, 6 months after we Transitioned, CASA conducted a level one audit (the highest available), and no concerns were raised.

At no stage during the process did CASA ever require contracts of us, or in fact any other flying training organisation in Australia. The requirements regarding contracts, is a requirement specifically being placed on APTA. Other operators continue to be exempted from this requirement. I assert that in the last 25 years of the practice of schools sharing AOCs, CASA does not hold any contracts on any other operators. They have chosen not to refute my allegation, because the fact is the CASA requirement is unique to APTA. It is unfair and unjust that you elect to single my Organisation out, and apply conditions to me that you choose not to apply to other operators.

Importantly, the use of a contract was an APTA initiative, and at no stage had CASA ever required a contract The contracts were drawn up by lawyers, and have been reviewed on at least 5 occasions since that time by lawyers. APTA and APTA members are satisfied with the contracts that we use. It is only CASA that is not satisfied. It is incumbent on CASA to tell me what you want in the contracts.

In October 2018, without any prior warning at all, CASA did a complete reversal of policy and initiated the action that has been continuing for more than 8 months now. The impact of that action on the business, my family, my members and staff has been traumatic. It is a clear breach of many aspects of your own regulatory philosophy.

Initially CASA action was not based on contracts, but the action was taken on the basis of

Aviation Ruling and
Temporary locations procedure.

After approximately two months, CASA admitted that the Aviation Ruling was the incorrect basis to be taking the action and “took the Aviation Ruling off the table”.

CASA also realised that the Temporary locations procedure was in fact their own procedure that they had suggested, helped us design, approved, and in fact they approved bases under the system. It is ludicrous that you now penalise me and my organisation for the very procedure that CASA in fact suggested.

After the CASA confusion was sorted out, they moved to the Latrobe Valley audit results. CASA has ignored 10 requests from me to finalise the allegations made, and they have tried to avoid addressing my concerns. The audit results and the associated process could not be justified, with new allegations arriving many months after you conducted an audit.

With the aviation ruling off the table, the temp locations embarrassingly identified as CASAs own procedure, and an inability to back up the allegations of regulatory breaches, CASA moved to the topic of contracts.

CASA initially accused us of not having contracts in place. CASA had forgotten they had been provided with contracts on multiple occasions. The topic them changed yet again but this time to a requirement to see signed copies of the contracts which we had, and they were provided to CASA.

As nothing appeared to be “sticking” he topic then moved yet again, but now back to the content of the contracts. CASA then provided guidance material on the first occasion that I fully adopted and submitted to CASA. For reasons that I cannot understand, they then rejected the contracts with their own material included.

CASA provided a second lot of guidance material, which I fully adopted. CASA then accepted the second version of the contracts. CASA advised “I have reviewed the draft contract provided this date. I can confirm the content is acceptable to CASA. My appreciation to you and your staff for provision of same”, but hours later reversed their position and withdrew the approved contracts. It appeared that nothing could satisfy CASA and I have no doubt that there was a “hidden agenda” and that was driven by Mr Crawford.

After approximately 6 months, and a high level of confusion within CASA, they were forced into outsourcing the contract requirement to an outside lawyer. That begs the question. Why would CASA initiate the action back in October 2018? In order to know that something is wrong, you do need to know what is right. CASA obviously didn’t!!! It took over 6 months before CASA had the third lot of guidance material.

Eventually a third set of guidance was supplied. CASA advised that it was guidance only and I should use my own terminology, rather than take theirs verbatim. I reviewed that against our contracts and exposition and am satisfied that our current contracts and exposition meet all requirements from their “guidance” material. I have asked CASA to identify any deficiencies and I will attend to them if they provide that information. There is no resistance from me, but I do require clear and concise guidance.

Unfortunately another point of confusion exists, as CASA have provided information on our Part 141 operations only, and have not provided any guidance on the Part 142 component, which is the majority of what we do, so until they clarify that, I am unable to move forward. I have made two requests, but they have not been answered.

CASA have also stipulated that all personnel must be APTA “employees”. The existing definitions of employees support the APTA model, so I have asked CASA to provide a definition of an employee that meets their requirements for this situation, which I am waiting on.

The third lot of guidance material suggests that we need to be assessed on the following. I point out that these are the exact items I attended to with CASA years earlier.

Suitability of the organisation.
Chain of Command in the organisation.
The number, qualifications, and competency of personnel.
Sufficiency of the facilities.
Suitability of the procedures and practices.
Suitability of Key Personnel.
Full operational control.
Compliance with procedures.
Capability to comply with legislation.
Compliance with directions.
Understanding of commitments
Access to reference library
Standardisation and proficiency checks
Ability to remove unsuitable personnel
Notification of change of Key Personnel.
Maintain a register of instructors.
Notification of
Provide a copy to all parties of the Operations manual
Supervision to ensure compliance with the manual.
Compliance with audit findings.
Access to records.
Log of all simulator training.
List of simulators
Information pertinent to aircraft
Log of medicals of all personnel
Ability of APTA to cancel or suspend the agreement.

As all members will be aware we do have all of these systems in place because we actually did exactly this more than two years ago, working with CASA personnel and that is what lead to our approval in April 2017. These were the exact items that I worked on with CASA over a two year period as we designed APTA, and they are the procedures we have been following for over two years.

It is obvious that the CASA personnel that I deal with really have no idea about APTA. I have asked CASA to describe to me their understanding of APTA, but they steadfastly refuse to do so. APTA is not confused. The members are not confused, and the personnel are not confused. It is in fact only CASA that is confused. It is CASA that is breaching its obligations placed on it by the Regulatory Philosophy. It is CASA that chose to initiate a complete reversal of policy with no warning, and it is CASA that has bought substantial damage to the business, the members, the staff and to me personally. There are no safety concerns, there are no regulatory breaches, and you cannot direct me to any legislative breaches. I am dealing with the “opinions” of CASA personnel who have displayed unconscionable conduct.

The current situation is that CASA will soon decide on continuing operations. I have engaged substantive legal advice, and a failure by CASA to act appropriately, will be met with a class action, and this will be immediately initiated if required. I will be calling on the wider industry and professional organisations to join me in that class action, as my concerns are shared by the wider GA community.

The failure of CASA to achieve clear and concise aviation safety standards, the failure of CASA to comply with its own regulatory philosophy, the malpractice of certain CASA individuals, and a flagrant disregard for the PGPA Act, the total disregard for the Ministers Statement of Expectation, and a complete failure to act in a well-intentioned manner, and a preference to act in a bullying and intimidating manner are in fact the causes of the problems.

Quite simply, the confusion exists within CASA. APTA was designed to increase safety, increase regulatory compliance, protect our respective business, and to create jobs. The concept is fully approved by CASA and the complete reversal of policy is not acceptable.

CASA has placed a number of restrictions on my ability to trade that have had enormous consequences, and I emphasise that there are no allegations of safety concerns or regulatory breaches. This entire issue and all of the associated damage to so many businesses and people is truly disgusting and could have been avoided had .......................................... acted in a well intentioned manner, and adhered to the obligations placed on them, in their roles.

Glen Buckley

Will Nuttall, Brad Lacy, David Jones, and Craig Martin
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Old 3rd Jul 2019, 00:32
  #108 (permalink)  
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Onya Glen. !!
Easy to see why a Royal Commission or Judicial Inquiry is needed.
CAsA's ****ty nappies need to be hung out on the line for all to see. Fort Fumble is a corrupt and unethical farce of the first magnitude.
What a waste of time and money for all concerned, and so destructive to the GA industry, so vital to this wide brown land..
One does have to wonder at the mind-set of some CAsA persons, bullies and BS artists, it borders on the insane.
Its a bit of a joke with all the requirements they place on people and businesses.. and DONT do the same themselves.
Different strokes for different folks, depending where you're standing, or who you know, or dont..
CAsA does no wrong. CasA will never admit the truth. CAsA will obfusticate and play pseudo-legal buggery to their hearts content to arrive at any result they want.
Even the Head? of Legal, Dr Discrepancy doesnt believe in the Rule of Law, so what hope have we got
CEO and Boards come and go like smelly sox, and over the last 2 or 3 decades it has just got WORSE.
WTF is going on, apart from absolute bureaucratic lunacy..?
We, the people should have a right to put all this to an END.

ps Class Action?. I'm in. Vicarious Liability and lots, lots more. And 20 years of paperwork and FOIs to back it up. This disgusting "Authority" has GOT TO GO
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Old 4th Jul 2019, 03:40
  #109 (permalink)  
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Originally Posted by FPDO
Hit them up for a Freedom of Information request.
This will show what actions were taken internally upon your correspondence arriving at their office.
You have a right to request and they must supply
Doesn't mean they will release anything.

They can stonewall you endlessly and invent BS reasons to not release the information.

They might also claim that it'll take 500 hours to search for and assess the material you've requested, and that you'll need to pay an exorbitant fee for them to do so. You'll pay the fee, and be handed a stack of documents where the interesting details are blacked out.

You could then take the matter to the OAIC. The Information Commissioner may well find in your favour, but they're so under resourced that it'll take two years to reach a decision.

The original FOI decision will be referred back to CASA, who will then choose a whole suite of new reasons to refuse access to the information you've requested. You then make another application to the OAIC, wait another two years, and the cycle repeats.

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Old 4th Jul 2019, 07:16
  #110 (permalink)  
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If yr FOI from CAsA is blacked out somewhat ...or all. With BS excuses like 'not in the public interest' and others. The classic was ..If you know from the (req'd)docs what CAsA people had to say, we wont be able to manage our staff, because they wont talk in any 'investigation'
THEY get to read the investigation transcript in full. And in my case used something in there against me , when I had told the truth to the investigator. Honest these bastards are NOT..
Dont ask THEM for a review. Go straight to the Office of the Information Commissioner OAIC. They will review CAsA's dirty work.. two NON FOIs for reports , and OAIC got me enough to work with.
Like I said before this disgusting outfit HAS to GO
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Old 5th Jul 2019, 02:38
  #111 (permalink)  
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Hi Sunfish
I operated a VFR Cessna for aerial photography (airwork) , we were tempted to do some work in the Solomon Islands under PVT but gave it away as too hard, need a international AoC.
CASA got a whiff, and a please explain why your AoC is not available on your website , as it's a requirement. etc, I was ignorant of this rule but it appeared more like intimidation and bullying tactics than helpful advice.
I did point out that Qantas doesn't have their AoC details on their website either. Didn't hear a peep after that.
Why did I require to operate under an AoC ($30/Hr) , the pilot is qualified under CASA and the maintenance is conducted by CASA recognised people, I'm not Qantas.
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Old 5th Jul 2019, 06:01
  #112 (permalink)  
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I always thort that to operate in another country like PNG, one has to get permission from the country concerned...as we did. While CAsA may have some interest in an Oz registered a/c, once you are out of Oz ..what then.
On one trip to PNG many moons ago I got a lovely document from the " International Division" (sic..very sick) from a lady who shall remain nameless, PNG hadnt even been contacted and this doc stated Here is your permission to operate in PNG !!. It was all bumpf. Actually it was the PNG entry permit for the aircraft and the job that "allowed it", organised by myself.
All that "fake job" rubbish has since been changed, or modified as CAsA does continuously to keep you even more confused . Last trip, PNG clearance from CAA POM and off we went.
Nauru.. we just went there, by permission of Nauru Government./Lands Dept who wanted the place mapped. It must be about the only Republic that you can fit in a single shot from FL170 NIce place to visit for just 2 weeks, and the Surveyors opening remark was 'Welcome to the Alcatraz of the Pacific !' Which now it is.
Certain HF frequency was required tho, ditto for PNG. Isnt there a lot of water out there tho.?
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Old 11th Jul 2019, 03:10
  #113 (permalink)  
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Industry Complaints Commisioner Report

Well today is the day that CASA is scheduled to release the Report from the Industry Complaints Commissioner into my matter.

On receipt of the report, I will either be satisfied or unsatisfied, so I thought it might be timely to provide some feedback to Industry. My suggestion would be that AOPA and other organisations consider this feedback in their future dealings with CASA in trying to bring about Organisational Improvement.

I lodged a number of complaints through the ICC during December and January, and the report should be released today ( 6 months later)


The ICC is exceptional. I appreciate that previous incumbents have not been well accepted by Industry, the current position holder is exceptional. He travelled from Canberra to meet with me, and spent considerable time discussing my concerns. I have no doubt that he has the highest levels of honesty and integrity, and I stand by that comment, prior to the release of his report, which may not be to my satisfaction.

However, the Department is grossly under resourced. It was clearly identified to CASA that their actions would cost me $10,000 per week. It should not take 6 months to finalise a report, when the commercial impact is substantial. This department must have further resourcing.

The ICC should have specified criteria published with regards to turn around times. This will provide clarity to industry, and accountability.

The ICC cannot draw their salary from CASA. It is disrespectful to the process, and takes away the credibility. My own report is due today, and its quite likely that CASA will have a different perspective to me. If I know that the person writing and releasing the report draws their salary from CASA its simple human nature that I will feel aggrieved. There are three important words. All significant, but all with different meanings i.e. unfair, unjust, and unlawful. In the eyes of the law they are very different words, with different ramifications. Does the truly independent person hover over the same letters on the keyboard as the CASA employee. I don't know, and I cant cast aspersions, but I am human.

In the interests of improving safety, transparency, effectiveness and credibility.

The office needs more resources allocated to it, and it must be truly independent from CASA. It should also have performance criteria with regard to response times.

Cheers. GB.

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Old 11th Jul 2019, 04:18
  #114 (permalink)  
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I can concur with yr comments re the current ICC. JH.

ANY investigation into CAsA should be done by an independent body, with truly adequate funding not just a niggardly pittance as allocated by CAsA now.
Amazing how CAsA can spend so little, and yet when it comes to arse covering, so much to spend and waste.

Will be interesting to see how you make out.
Dont forget the OAIC for any review of denied documents.
A must since CAsA has turned NON FOI into an art form.
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Old 25th Jul 2019, 14:02
  #115 (permalink)  
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Any further updates Glen? I am sure many of us are hoping for a good result for you and APTA.
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Old 30th Jul 2019, 05:04
  #116 (permalink)  
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Any updates, big audience for this one!
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Old 30th Jul 2019, 12:16
  #117 (permalink)  
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I received a PM from a Pprune member (thank you!)
It would appear Glenn's business has folded? At least at Moorabbin and that MAC (Moorabbin Airport Corp.) has taken the building.

If this is indeed true; I hope CASA are proud of themselves !
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Old 30th Jul 2019, 21:43
  #118 (permalink)  
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Very sad. I wish him and his team well. Why his school in particular and not other APTA members?
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Old 31st Jul 2019, 04:16
  #119 (permalink)  
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MFT Update

Good afternoon all,

I have a lot of people after me for a lot of information, and will try and dump it all down here in the one spot. I anticipate being back here frequently over coming days.

It is heartbreaking to advise that MFT is no more. Whilst the business does operate, I have lost my premises.

The facts are;

MFT was clearly in arrears on the land lease, and had been for some time.
The Airport personnel I deal with have been exceptional i.e. Mark, Paul, John and Diem, and I mean exceptional.
Under Marc's stewardship, many months ago, Marc constructed a plan that I thought I could achieve, but alas I could not.
Fully in accordance with a lease that I have signed and understood, the owners of Moorabbin Airport, are exercising their right and their obligations to take control of the building.

Of course it is heartbreaking, but the responsibility is mine. This has had an enormous effect on the staff and students, and for that I apologise.

All students and staff are "APTA", so their training can continue uninterrupted, or at least with minimal interruption. Operations have moved immediately to the Vortex building which is an APTA member. All staff will continue to get paid, and all staff will continue to deliver the same training from another building in the same aircraft. It is effectively only a building change.

My hope is that the new owners of the MFT building will lease the premises back to MFT. That is a project for the future when I am well underway cleaning up the fallout from this fiasco.

As most readers will be aware, CASA took action against APTA from October 2018. CASA actions placed a number of restrictions on my ability to trade. i.e. I could not market, advertise, take on customers, add capabilities, or renew existing capabilities. From the onset it was identified to CASA on numerous occasions in writing, that their actions would cost me at least $10,000 per week, as it has. In October 2018, I anticipated this matter would continue on for 6 weeks at most, with a total cost of $60,000. Unfortunately it has now dragged on unnecessarily for approximately 40 weeks.

If I had known it would drag on for this long, I may have taken a different course of action. In my worst nightmare I could not have imagined 40 weeks with no end in sight. Nevertheless, I was compelled to continue as I had a large number of operators depending on me for their own continuity. As time has dragged on and the financial impact worsened I called on MFT and my parents to support continuing operations.

It got to the stage where I could ask my family for no more, and the burden fell on MFT alone to sustain APTA operations. Quite simply the numbers didn't stack up, and there was no resolution in sight. I was not going to be able to meet staff salaries, and APTA was sold for the value of the debt only.

I must use this opportunity to thank the team at MFT for their unwavering professionalism. To Sreya Brown, Will Long, Tim Verhoef, Tarik Hartley, Shingote Shubham, Rory O' Heir, Pete Schultz, Cameron Meyer, Coby Ramos, Jake Lummis, Jo Ikin, Lawrie Byrnes, Pete bishop, and James Skinner. They have worked under extremely challenging conditions over the last 6 months in particular. They have demonstrated uncompromising standards of safety and compliance. The organisation has been under enormous duress, with all of the associated challenges and they have conducted themselves admirably.

They are all names worth noting because they are a truly exceptional team, and will be an enormous attribute to the new owners of APTA. I am confident the new owners have a vision, and will execute a vision, that will bring stability and opportunities for all.

Please feel free to fire away with any questions, cheers. Glen.

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Old 31st Jul 2019, 21:59
  #120 (permalink)  
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The heady days of MFT's commencement 15 years ago was of excitement. Mixed in with exceptional flight training who could forget the the spa on the balcony, the 'recycling' shoot from the balcony to the garbage bin. Glen thoughtfully distributing the 'recycling' amongst other tenants bins! A fair whack of Glen's instructors and students are now Airline Pilots, RFDS Pilots, Flight Attendants etc.

I look forward to MFT's phoenix like rise from the ashes!
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