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Congress, Trump Administration Must Prioritize Air Traffic Control Reform

Earlier this year, an effort to usher in badly needed air traffic control reform spearheaded by House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman Bill Shuster died before reaching a floor vote. The idea, widely supported by aviation researchers, is modeled on Canada’s successful reforms from two decades ago. In a nutshell, air traffic control is removed from the government agency and spun off into an independent, nongovernmental nonprofit. The nonprofit corporation would be governed by a board of stakeholders and would charge user fees, which would replace the aviation taxes currently collected by the government agency.

Nav Canada is now regarded as the most efficient and advanced air navigation service provider in the world, winning three Eagle Awards from the International Air Transport Association since 2001. Since taking over air traffic control responsibilities from the Canadian government, the inflation-adjusted user fees charged by Nav Canada are more than 30 percent lower than the taxes they replaced. Nav Canada is also leading an effort to launch a new constellation of 10 air traffic control satellites in partnership with U.S.-based Iridium Communications, scheduled to launch later this week. Iridium originally approached the Federal Aviation Administration several years ago, but the FAA was unable to commit due to the chronic failures plaguing the rollout of its NextGen air traffic control modernization effort.

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Outlet: Competitive Enterprise Institute
Author: Marc Scribner
Type: Online
Date: Dec. 12, 2016
Title: Congress, Trump Administration Must Prioritize Air Traffic Control Reform
Link: https://cei.org/blog/congress-trump-administration-must-prioritize-air-traffic-control-reform