NBAA Concerned by Privatization of ATC Systems in Trump’s Budget

National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) President and CEO Ed Bolen expressed concern over budget-planning details released by the White House, showing the Trump administration’s apparent commitment to privatizing the nation’s air traffic control (ATC) system.

“For several years, NBAA has said the public airspace belongs to the American public and should serve all Americans,” Bolen said. “The president’s budget takes the public’s elected representatives out of the equation and leaves it to a private board to ensure the public’s interest is being well served. We are troubled and concerned by this proposal and will review it closely as the legislative process moves forward.”

The documents released by the president, which provide greater detail to preliminary budget plans the White House released on March 16, outline the administration’s blueprint for federal spending in the coming fiscal year. The White House, the big airlines and others have promoted the notion of privatizing ATC as Congress debates the reauthorization of funding and programs for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA).

“With this budget, the president has made clear his administration’s plan to pursue a concept that has raised a host of concerns, not just among aviation stakeholders, but also among congressional lawmakers from both political parties, mayors from across the country, organizations from the political left and right, consumer groups and a majority of Americans,” Bolen said. “As the debate continues in Congress over FAA reauthorization and modernization of the nation’s aviation system, we will work with Congress to promote forward-thinking initiatives that preserve America’s aviation-leadership position and ensure the ATC system continues to serve all Americans in the decades to come.”

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