New Mexico Seaplane Ban - Letters Needed


Unknown Member
People passionate about and interested in seaplanes, might care to know that the State Parks Division of New Mexico has proposed to close all State Lakes to seaplanes and float-planes. Comments on the amendment are accepted until October 31 2012.

Seaplane Pilots Association has issued a "Call To Action" and we issued a member alert including several news releases to gain momentum in getting NMSPD to change course on this and work with the stakeholders and associations on common sense solutions. NMSPD is mainly concerned but unfortunately not very well educated about AIS (Invasive Species) and Safety.

We are now soliciting letters to NMSPD and also to Governor Martinez (who recently declared September as the "General Aviation Appreciation Month") have gone out. At this point, we are trying to get as many letters in opposition to this ban sent to NMSPD as possible. Several ideas for paraphrasing of comments can be found via this link , or in AVwebs news flash.

Short & Sweet or Long & Exhaustive - Everything in Support of Seaplanes Matters!
Time is of the essence.

Proposal/ Amendment: (Page 6): NMAC.pdf

Thanks for any help!


Well-Known Member
To be honest if you can find a lake to land in New Mexico that is not shallow or dried out you deserve to be able to land there LOL.


CAP Member
To be honest if you can find a lake to land in New Mexico that is not shallow or dried out you deserve to be able to land there LOL.
That was my first thought too. Elephant Butte might be about the only one at the moment capable of safe seaplane operation.

Good news is that I've got a feeling Governor Martinez will be receptive.


Unknown Member
Maybe I missed it, but why the issue?
Unsubstantiated AIS and public safety concerns, that's "why".

Especially because New Mexico isn't a high activity state for seaplanes, but important for flight planning purposes, solid opposition to the ban will accomplish several goals.

  1. The state will learn and work with us to find acceptable rules and guidelines based on factual information.
  2. Expensive litigation may be avoided as the ban would affect a federally listed seaplane base and houses several discriminatory, arbitrary and capricious moves.
  3. The pilot community (nationally and undivided by operational characteristic of wheels, floats, general or business aviation) would acknowledge that advocacy of 2012 and beyond may be a little more involved and require a bit more effort from each one of us.
  4. (but not last) States and Governors declaring certain months of the year as "General Aviation Months" may once be challenged to put their actions and demeanor where their big, vote hungry mouths are.
In 2010 we had ~ 35000 certificated seaplane pilots in the U.S. It is unclear if more that 8000 of them belong to specific Advocacy Groups (most are likely AOPA/ EAA members) and how or if they follow current events in terms of advocacy. It is even more unclear how many of them may believe that such issues can be sufficiently and lastingly addressed by any of the alphabet groups out there. Issues are moving from big to small and in many cases local authorities who don't even know what AOPA is may be dealing and deciding on our access.

The unfortunate truth is (I base this statement on ~ 11 years involved in aviation advocacy in Europe and the U.S.) that only roughly 10% of any particular membership based organization will be active and involved, while many will stay inactive due to distance or the fact that helping others in another state bears no direct benefit to them. Meanwhile, the fact that lots of comments (which take 3-5 minutes to write and send) will show the involved parties that general aviation pilots look out for each other and fight together against unfair and unsubstantiated regulatory burdens.

Considering the 10% rule, the best I can personally do, is to spread the word and hope that people will make the effort.

True, New Mexico is small and seemingly unimportant to most seaplane and general aviation pilots in the U.S. (I got more letters from Canada than from the U.S. which is a surprise, really :oops:), but issues like these (generally) have a high potential to mutate into fast spreading cancer. So, that's why. I wouldn't bother you guys with this if it didn't mean anything to me or I thought the support we have was enough.

Thanks! ;)