32 CFR 855.1 - Policy.
The Air Force establishes and uses its airfields to support the scope and level of operations necessary to carry out missions worldwide. The Congress funds airfields in response to Air Force requirements, but also specifies that civil aviation access is a national priority to be accommodated when it does not jeopardize an installation's military utility. The Air Force engages in dialogue with the civil aviation community and the Federal Aviation Administration to ensure mutual understanding of long-term needs for the national air transportation system and programmed military force structure requirements. To implement the national policy and to respond to requests for access, the Air Force must have policies that balance such requests with military needs. Civil aircraft access to Air Force airfields on foreign territory requires host nation approval.
(a) The Air Force will manage two programs that are generally used to grant civil aircraft access to its airfields: civil aircraft landing permits and joint-use agreements. Other arrangements for access will be negotiated as required for specific purposes.
(1) Normally, landing permits will be issued only for civil aircraft operating in support of official Government business. Other types of use may be authorized if justified by exceptional circumstances. Access will be granted on an equitable basis.
(2) The Air Force will consider only proposals for joint use that do not compromise operations, security, readiness, safety, environment, and quality of life. Further, only proposals submitted by authorized local Government representatives eligible to sponsor a public airport will be given the comprehensive evaluation required to conclude a joint-use agreement.
(3) Any aircraft operator with an inflight emergency may land at any Air Force airfield without prior authorization. An inflight emergency is defined as a situation that makes continued flight hazardous.
(c) Civil aircraft use of Air Force airfields in the United States will be subject to Federal laws and regulations. Civil aircraft use of Air Force airfields in foreign countries will be subject to US Federal laws and regulations that have extraterritorial effect and to applicable international agreements with the country in which the Air Force installation is located.