2015 Press Releases

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NBAA Issues 'Call to Action' Against Proposed ATC Privatization, User Fees

Contact: Dan Hubbard, (202) 783-9360, dhubbard@nbaa.org

Washington, DC, June 25, 2015 – The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) today called upon its more than 10,000 Member Companies to make their voices heard in strong opposition to any legislative proposal that would strip congressional oversight of the nation’s air traffic control (ATC) network in favor of a private entity funded through user fees.

On June 15, U.S. Representative Bill Shuster (R-9-PA), chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, indicated he would soon introduce an FAA reauthorization bill that would include the creation of a privatized ATC system. Chairman Shuster further indicated that such an entity would be funded through aviation user fees.

While specific details of those proposals remain unclear at this time, NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen noted that both positions run contrary to longstanding positions held by the business aviation community.

“The potentially dire consequences from such actions cannot be overstated,” Bolen wrote in his personal appeal to NBAA Members. “Without Congress to ensure that our nation's air traffic system safeguards the aviation needs of the entire public – including the people and companies that rely on general aviation in small and mid-size towns – such sweeping authority would instead be granted to a group of self-interested parties.

“These parties will be left to make decisions about where and when companies using business aviation can fly, how much it will cost to do so, and what type of payment – including user fees – will be demanded of operators,” he continued.

View Bolen’s call to action in its entirety.

Listen to a special NBAA Flight Plan podcast for more on NBAA's call to action.NBAA Flight Plan podcast

Similar to past instances when legislative proposals represented potential threats to the freedom and mobility provided through business aviation, NBAA issued this latest call to action to inform NBAA Members about the implications of Shuster's remarks.

Bolen’s message also advised how members of the business aviation community may encourage their elected representatives to oppose any legislation that would enact user fees, and take away the focus on the public interest that comes with congressional oversight of the nation’s aviation system.

For example, NBAA's online Contact Congress online resource provides a quick, convenient means for people in NBAA’s Membership to inform their elected officials that they oppose ATC privatization and user fees. “Members of Congress are most attentive to their constituents, who live and work in the states and districts they are charged with representing,” Bolen noted in his call to action.

NBAA has also established a way for the business aviation community to use social media to make its concerns understood. NBAA Members with Twitter accounts can alert their lawmakers to the concern over that social media venue – use NBAA’s Twitter advocacy tool.

"Our industry cannot be silent or complacent against these threats," Bolen added. "We must once again make our united voice of opposition heard on this issue.”

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Founded in 1947 and based in Washington, DC, the National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) is the leading organization for companies that rely on general aviation aircraft to help make their businesses more efficient, productive and successful. The Association represents more than 10,000 companies and provides more than 100 products and services to the business aviation community, including the NBAA Business Aviation Convention & Exhibition, the world's largest civil aviation trade show. Learn more about NBAA at www.nbaa.org.

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