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General Aviation Groups Urge Congressional Transportation Leaders to Focus on a Consensus Driven, Bipartisan FAA Bill

The General Aviation Manufacturers Association (GAMA) on Sept. 14 joined five other general aviation groups in sending letters to transportation leaders in the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives, urging them to enact an extension of Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) programs for at least six months and using that time to pass bipartisan, consensus driven FAA Reauthorization legislation that would address many critical aviation issues.

“There is a lack of consensus in the aviation community for Title II of H.R. 2997, the 21st Century AIRR Act, which seeks to effectively hand over control of our nation’s air traffic system to the airlines and special interests,” the letters state. “Removing Title II would ensure consensus and allow for our aviation system to continue to serve the traveling public and the aviation industry.”

The general aviation association leaders also emphasized the need for an FAA extension to ensure focus remains on the important progress being made on NextGen and needed airport projects. The groups cite a recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) report concluding the U.S. air traffic modernization program is on schedule.

The heads of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association, Experimental Aircraft Association, General Aviation Manufacturers Association, Helicopter Association International, National Air Transportation Association and the National Business Aviation Association signed the letters.

The letters were sent to House Transportation and Infrastructure (T&I) Committee Chair Bill Shuster (R-9-PA) and Ranking Member Peter DeFazio (D-4-OR), as well as Senate Commerce Committee Chair John Thune (R-SD) and Ranking Member Bill Nelson (D-FL).

For more information about the letter asking for an extension, as well as about GAMA, visit

Former Thunderbirds and Blue Angels Oppose ATC Privatization

As the threat of ATC privatization continues, six former team commanders of the U.S. Air Force Thunderbirds and U.S. Navy Blue Angels have declared their strong opposition to the proposed legislation.

“It will add billions to our nation’s budget deficit, negatively impact our national security, and needlessly complicate border protection,” said retired Navy Capt. Greg McWherter in a video produced by the International Council of Air Shows.

These concerns are in addition to the threat privatization poses to the general aviation community, which would have little voice in the privatized system proposed by the House of Representatives in H.R. 2997.

“This is a deeply flawed piece of legislation that is opposed by the vast majority of people who understand the negative implications of this naked power grab by the airlines and their allies,” said ICAS President John Cudahy. “These former military officers are speaking out because they are genuinely concerned that the legislation could permanently damage our country.”

The officers urged the general public to voice their opposition to their elected representatives at


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