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In Arizona, Bolen Provides an Update on ATC Privatization Battle

Dec. 1, 2017

As part of the work being done by NBAA and a host of other voices to halt efforts underway in Washington for privatizing the nation’s ATC system, association President and CEO Ed Bolen spent time in Arizona this week, meeting with members of the state’s aviation community to discuss the need for everyone in the industry to remain engaged on the issue.

Bolen’s message was clear: the legislative proposal to privatize ATC is nothing but an airline power grab that would have disastrous consequences for the nation’s smaller communities not served by the airlines – including those in the Grand Canyon state.

At a keynote presentation to more than 150 attendees at a Phoenix Aero Club luncheon on Nov. 29, Bolen stressed the need for action to defeat the legislation.

”This bill would place control of ATC squarely in the hands of 13 unelected, unaccountable individuals, and threatens the future vitality of general aviation airports,“ said Bolen. ”Instead of providing targeted solutions to identified modernization needs, H.R. 2997 will likely slow down the implementation of NexGen and add $100 billion to the national deficit.“

Bolen spent the previous evening with more than 30 members of the Arizona Business Aviation Association (AZBAA), and thanked the group for its leadership in opposing H.R. 2997, while emphasizing the need to keep up the pressure. ”AZBAA has always answered the call when support is needed,“ noted Bolen.

At the State Capitol, Bolen and other aviation leaders met with members of the newly-formed Arizona Aviation Caucus, which NBAA has supported since it was established earlier this year.

”Arizona ranks in the top 10 states nationwide in general aviation economic impact,“ said Stacy Howard, NBAA’s Western regional representative. ”This is a thriving aviation community that wants to push to even higher heights. They welcomed the time taken by NBAA’s chief executive officer, to recognize and support their efforts.“