Advisors To Oversee GPS

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NASA has established the National Space-Based Positioning, Navigation and Timing Advisory Board, and AOPA President Phil Boyer has been appointed as a member. "GPS has become a public utility like electricity or water," Boyer said. To help oversee that infrastructure, the board brings together experts to provide advice on policy, planning, program management and funding. Boyer is the only board member from the general aviation sector. The board had its first meetings last week in Washington, D.C. "I left with a new understanding of how ... so many industries and consumers across the board now depend upon GPS," Boyer said. "Nearly 90 percent of our members tell us they use GPS when they fly, and many GA pilots are flying instrument approaches to smaller airports using the enhanced vertical and horizontal guidance from the GPS-WAAS system," said Boyer. He added that GPS is "a silent utility that must be protected, continue to be government funded and remain freely available without user fees."