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Minnesota Business Aviation Association



published 2/27/18



Washington, DC, Feb. 26, 2018 ­– The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) today joined with more than 200 organizations representing general aviation pilots, consumer groups, manufacturers, businesses, airports, management associations and unions in once again urging congressional leaders to reject efforts to include so-called "privatization" of the nation's air traffic control (ATC) system in an infrastructure bill, or any other bill.

"As you all know, bipartisan support for legislation investing in our nation's infrastructure will be critical to getting a bill to the president's desk," wrote the groups. "While Congress will face many challenges as it considers a comprehensive infrastructure bill, the divisive ATC privatization proposal, which is full of risk and unintended consequences, should not be one of them."

The letter was sent to Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY), Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer (D-NY), House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-1-WI) and House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-12-CA).

The groups noted that concerns over transferring the ATC system to a board dominated by the airlines and their interests have stopped the House from moving a long-term bill (H.R. 2997) to reauthorize funding and programs for the Federal Aviation Administration.

Handing over control of the ATC system, free of charge, to an airline-dominated board has been met with concern or outright opposition by congressional leaders from both political parties, as well as a host of business, airport and agricultural organizations, passenger groups, pilot groups, conservative and liberal groups, unions, 100 mayors from every state, more than 100 pilot-CEOs, aviation legends (including hero-pilot Capt. "Sully" Sullenberger), a majority of Americans and more.

Independent, widely respected analysts have also raised red flags about the concept, including the Congressional Budget Office, the Government Accountability Office and the Congressional Research Service.

"Congress should focus on finding solutions that will garner strong industry support to help rebuild our nation's infrastructure," the groups' letter continued. "For the aviation industry, that means modernization, not privatization."

The groups stressed that general aviation generates $219 billion in total economic output annually in the United States and supports 1.1 million jobs. "Access to our national airspace and ecosystem of airports creates jobs and generates local economic activity, which helps make our aviation system work for all Americans," they wrote.

"This growing and well-informed chorus of individuals and organizations remains united against any plan to give control of the nation's aviation system to a private board beyond the reach of Congress," noted NBAA President and CEO Ed Bolen. "The United States has the safest, largest, most diverse and most efficient air traffic control system in the world. We will continue to support effective, bipartisan solutions to the challenges of modernization, so America can continue to be the world's aviation leader five, 10 and 25 years from now."


February 26, 2018

The Honorable Mitch McConnell Majority Leader
U.S. Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510

The Honorable Charles Schumer Minority Leader
U.S. Senate
Washington, D.C. 20510

The Honorable Paul Ryan Speaker
U.S. House of Representatives Washington, D.C. 20515

The Honorable Nancy Pelosi Minority Leader
U.S. House of Representatives Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Majority Leader McConnell, Speaker Ryan and Minority Leaders Schumer and Pelosi:

As representatives of a broad array of organizations including general aviation pilots, consumer groups, manufacturers, businesses, airports, state and local aviation officials, management associations and unions representing hardworking Americans, we look forward to working with Congress on developing a bipartisan infrastructure package. At the same time, we strongly urge you to oppose any attempts to include a divisive and costly proposal to remove our nation’s air traffic control (ATC) system from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) in any comprehensive infrastructure bill or in any other legislation.

As you all know, bipartisan support for legislation investing in our nation’s infrastructure will be critical to getting a bill to the President’s desk. While Congress will face many challenges as it considers a comprehensive infrastructure bill, the divisive ATC privatization proposal which is full of risk and unintended consequences should not be one of them.

The lack of consensus in handing over our ATC system to a board dominated by the airlines and their interests has for almost two years now prevented the House from moving a long term FAA Reauthorization bill. The airlines constantly point the finger at ATC for delays, but the Department of Transportation’s own data reveals that airline-caused problems far surpass weather and air traffic control issues. The airlines have repeatedly demonstrated an inability to manage their own operations let alone our already safe ATC system all while taking in over $50 billion in “ancillary fees” from their passengers.

In fact, a recent CNBC poll shows that a majority of Americans oppose privatizing the nation’s ATC system. Congress should focus on finding solutions that will garner strong industry support to help rebuild our nation’s infrastructure. For the aviation industry, that means modernization not privatization.

Access to our national airspace and ecosystem of airports creates jobs and generates local economic activity which helps make our aviation system work for all Americans. In fact, general aviation alone generates $219 billion in total economic output in the United States and creates 1.1 million jobs.

Our national network of thousands of airports connect many rural communities to the rest of the world and forges a link for small businesses to their suppliers and customers so they can compete in a global economy. To remain competitive, we must ensure that airports of all sizes from small rural general aviation airports to larger commercial hub airports have the resources to expand their infrastructure needs, repair old facilities, or improve aviation safety. Therefore, support for our nation’s airports both large and small should be considered in any national infrastructure package.

Another national asset is our ATC system which is the largest, safest, most complex system in the world. While many in the aviation community oppose ATC privatization, everyone agrees on the need to modernize the system. The FAA’s NextGen program continues to make progress as several key platforms are either fully deployed or progressing towards full deployment. These achievements are due in large part to the skilled work of FAA employees who operate, manage, maintain, certify and build the NAS. Privatization would disrupt NextGen deployment and distract the focus of those responsible for the safest and most efficient system on earth.

Accelerating investment in NextGen as part of any infrastructure package will expedite the benefits for all users of the system including general aviation, commercial airlines and consumers.

Again, as Congress works to bring our nation’s infrastructure into the 21st century, we again urge you to not support the inclusion of the divisive proposal that would hand over our ATC system to a private monopoly. We look forward to working with Congress to find common sense, bipartisan solutions, that create good paying jobs and provide benefits to all aviation users.


Air Care Alliance
Airborne Law Enforcement Association Aircraft Electronics Association
Aircraft Kit Industry Association
Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association Airports Association of North Dakota Alabama Business Aviation Association Alaska Airmen Association
American Bonanza Society
American Helicopter Society International Antique Airplane Association
Arizona Business Aviation Association Arizona Flight Training Workgroup Arizona Pilots Association, AZ
Arkansas Airport Operators Association Association of Air Medical Services Association of California Airports Association of Critical Care Transport Aviation Council of Alabama
Aviation Council of Pennsylvania

Aviation Museum of Kentucky
Balloon Federation of America
Beech Aero Club of Frederick, MD Bessemer Airport Authority, AL
California Agricultural Aircraft Association California Pilots Association

Cardinal Flyers Online
Carolina Aviation Professionals Association
Centennial Airport Business Pilot’s Alliance, CO
Central Kentucky Regional Airport
Cessna 120/140 Association
Cessna Flyer Association
Cessna Pilots Association
Cessna Pilots Society
Chicago Area Business Aviation Association
Citation Jet Pilot Association
Clark County Aviation Association, NV
Clarksville Regional Airport, TN
Classic Jet Aircraft Association
Colorado Aeronautical Board
Colorado Aviation Business Association
Colorado Pilots Association
Commemorative Air Force
Connecticut Business Aviation Group
Corporate Aircraft Association
Deer Valley Pilots Association, AZ
Duncan Aviation
East Central Ohio Pilots Association
East Tennessee Pilots Club
Eastern Region Helicopter Council
Emergency Volunteer Air Corps
Experimental Aircraft Association
False River Regional Airport, LA
Flight School Association of North America
Florida Aero Club, FL
Florida Aviation Business Association
Flying Dentists Association
Flying Physicians Association
FNL Pilots Association
Friends of Meacham International Airport Association, TX General Aviation Alliance of Alabama
General Aviation Council of Hawaii

General Aviation Manufacturers Association Georgia Airports Association
Georgia Business Aviation Association Glasair Aircraft Owners Association

Granite State Airport Management Association, NH Greater Houston Business Aviation Alliance, TX Greater St Louis Business Aviation Association, MO Greater Waco Aviation Alliance, TX

Greater Washington Business Aviation Association, DC/VA/MD Helicopter Association International
Houma-Terrebonne Airport, LA
Houston Regional Aviation Professionals, TX

Idaho Airport Management Association Idaho Aviation Association
Idaho Business Aviation Association Idaho Contract Tower Coalition

Illinois Pilots Association, IL
Indiana Business Aviation Association
Indianapolis Aero Club, IN
International 180/185 Club
International Aerobatic Club
International Cessna 170 Association
International Council of Air Shows
Iowa Public Airports Association
Jim Pietz Aerosports, SD
Joe Foss Squadron of the Commemorative Air Force, SD Kansas Association of Airports
Kansas Chamber of Commerce
Kansas City Business Aviation Association
Kansas Pilots Association
Kentucky Aviation Association
Kentucky Business Aviation Association
Lancair Owners and Builders Organization
Lawyer Pilots Bar Association
Light Aircraft Manufacturers Association
Long Beach Airport Association, CA
Long Island Business Aviation Association, NY
Los Angeles Area Helicopter Operators Association, CA Louisiana Airport Managers Association, LA
Love Field Pilots Association, TX
Maine Aeronautics Association
Malibu/Mirage Owners & Pilots Association

Maryland Airport Managers Association Massachusetts Airport Management Association Massachusetts Business Aviation Association Mckellar Sipes Regional Airport- Jackson, TN Michigan Business Aviation Association Mid-Atlantic Aviation Coalition, NJ
Middle Tennessee Aero Club
Minnesota Aviation Trades Association

Minnesota Business Aviation Association

Minnesota Council of Airports
Minnesota Pilots Association
Minnesota Seaplane Association
Mississippi Airports Association
Missouri Pilots Association
Mockingbird Flying Club, SD
Montana Aviation Trades Association
Montana Pilots Association
Monticello Flying Club, VA
Mooney Summit
Morristown Aviation Association, NJ
MU2 Aircraft Owners & Pilots Association Naples Municipal Airport, FL
National Air Transportation Association
National Association of State Aviation Officials National Business Aviation Association Nebraska Association of Airport Officials Nebraska Aviation Council
Nebraska Business Aviation Association
Nevada Business Aviation Association
New Bedford Regional Pilots Association, MA New England Helicopter Council
New Jersey Aviation Association
New Mexico Airport Managers Association
New Mexico Pilots Association
North American Trainer Association
North Carolina Agricultural Aviation Association North Dakota Agricultural Aviation Association North Dakota Association of Aviation Museums North Dakota Aviation Council
North Dakota Business Aviation Association North Dakota Experimental Aviation Association North Dakota Pilots Association

North Dakota Professional Aviation Mechanics North Texas Business Aviation Association Northern California Business Aviation Association Octopus Flying Club, MD

Ohio Regional Business Aviation Association Oklahoma Airport Operators Association Oklahoma Business Aviation Association Oklahoma Pilots Association

Oregon Airport Management Association Oregon Aviation Industries
Oregon Pilots Association
Ozark Regional Business Aviation Group, MO Pacific Northwest Business Aviation Association Partnership for Corporate Aviation Training, TX Patient Airlift Services

Piper Flyer Association
Prescott Airport Users Association, AZ Quincy-Gadsden Airport Authority, FL Recreational Aviation Foundation
Rhode Island Pilots Association
Russellville Regional Airport, AR
San Antonio Area Business Aviation Alliance, TX San Carlos Airports Association, CA
Sanderson Farms, MS
Seaplane Pilots Association
Smyrna/Rutherford County Airport, TN
Soaring Society of America
Sonix Builders & Pilots Foundation
South Carolina Aviation Association
South Dakota Pilots Association
South Florida Business Aviation Association Southern California Aviation Association Southern Colorado Business Aviation Group Southern Museum of Flight, AL
Spokane Airport Tenants Association, WA Stuttgart Municipal Airport, AR
Tampa Bay Aviation Association, FL
Taylorcraft Owners Club
Tennessee Aviation Association
Tennessee Aviation Hall of Fame
Tennessee Business Aviation Association Teterboro Users Group, NJ

Texans for General Aviation, TX
Texas Corporate Aviation Schedulers and Dispatchers Group Tiger Flying Club, MD
Twin Cessna Flyer
United States Hang Gliding & Paragliding Association United States Parachute Association
United States Paragliding Association
Utah Airport Operators Association
Utah Business Aviation Association
Utah General Aviation Association
Van Nuys Airport Association, CA
Velocity Owners and Builders Association
Veterans Airlift Command
Vintage Aircraft Association
Virginia Aviation Business Association
Virginia Highlands Airport
Waco Chamber of Commerce, TX
Warbirds of America
Washington Airport Management Association
Washington Pilots Association
Washington Seaplane Pilots Association
Washington State Aviation Alliance
Washington State Community Airports Association
West Virginia Airport Managers Association
Westchester Aircraft Maintenance Association, NY Westchester Aviation Association, NY
Wichita Aero Club, KS
WingsReality EDU, ME
Wisconsin Aviation Trades Association
Wisconsin Business Aviation Association
Women in Aviation International
Wyoming Airport Operators Association
Yankton Regional Aviation Association, SD

American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees (AFSCME) American Federation of Teachers, AFL-CIO
Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO
FAA Managers Association

Federal Managers Association
Marine Engineers' Beneficial Association
Metal Trades Department, AFL-CIO
National Black Coalition of Federal Aviation Employees National Council of Social Security Management Associations

National Federation of Federal Employees
National Hispanic Coalition of Federal Aviation Employees
National Treasury Employees Union (NTEU)
National Weather Service Employees Organization
Patent Office Professional Association
Professional Air Traffic Controllers Organization, Inc. (PATCO) Professional Association of Aeronautical Center Employees (PAACE) Professional Aviation Safety Specialists
Professional Managers Association
Senior Executives Association
United Steelworkers (USW)

Consumer Action Flyers Rights

Over 100 Mayors from across the U.S. voice opposition to ATC Privatization

100 Business CEO’s from across the U.S. voice opposition to ATC Privatization 

Dassault Falcon
West Star Aviation
Premier Jet Center