Owning his own fleet of private aircraft, President Trump has endorsed an overhaul of air traffic control which is a controversial topic among those in the aviation industry. Last year, the proposal to overhaul air traffic control was included in legislation that would reauthorize the FAA, however the legislation stalled. Some are worried that if the measure passes, large commercial airlines would be given too much power. Now, NetJets Inc. has endorsed the legislation.
NetJets, an aircraft management company and private business jet charter, manages over 600 business jets in the U.S. and has sent a letter expressing the company’s support for FAA reform to Rep. Bill Shuster (R-PA), chairman of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. NetJets is of the opinion that under federal government control, air traffic controllers encounter substantial uncertainty both politically and financially, and that transferring air navigation in the U.S. to a private, non-profit corporation is beneficial for the aviation industry.
The letter sent by NetJets Aviation said that reforming and modernizing air traffic control is necessary, as there are challenges beyond the professionals who work in this capacity’s control that impact efficiency. NetJets is focused on becoming a leader in the aviation industry in terms of efficiency, safety, and customer service according to VP and Director of Operations, Alan Bobo.
The legislation stalled in 2016 when lawmakers who opposed reform claimed they were concerned that small airports and general aviation users would not be adequately represented or would lose access to airspace. Some lawmakers and general aviation groups are still opposed to the bill, although news reports claim the new proposal would exempt all general aviation users from user fees imposed by the new entity, and that there would be a more diverse board makeup than with last year’s proposal.
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