FAA Funding Extension Leads To Calls For Long-Term Reauthorization

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The National Business Aviation Association (NBAA) is pleased that Congress has extended Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) funding through a second budget extension. But the association repeated its stance that a multiyear authorization is sorely needed. The most recent extension will fund the FAA through March 8, 2024, under the same terms as the last long-term reauthorization passed in 2018.

NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen said, “We thank lawmakers for extending FAA authorization into 2024. However, an ongoing series of extensions creates the potential for disruptions to long-term planning for the FAA, and to the operational, safety and other agency services needed by the aviation sector, which is among the nation’s most highly regulated industries. We will continue working with Congress to pass a multi-year authorization bill as soon as feasible.”

A long-term reauthorization bill that includes many measures favored by NBAA and other general aviation advocacy groups has passed the House of Representatives. Those measures include making it less difficult to pursue aviation careers, thus expanding the pipeline that feeds the aviation workforce; improving training standards; and renewing funding for airport infrastructure projects, with a focus on providing support for general aviation airports. A similar bill is under consideration in the Senate, according to NBAA.

NBAA was among a large group of aviation advocacy groups that sent a written statement to last month’s hearing by the House Committee of Transportation and Infrastructure’s Subcommittee on Aviation concerning the risks involved in delaying long-term FAA reauthorization.

Mark Phelps
Mark Phelps is a senior editor at AVweb. He is an instrument rated private pilot and former owner of a Grumman American AA1B and a V-tail Bonanza.

15 COMMENTS

  1. Abolish the FAA (and most other federal agencies) and turn everything over to free market industry. What we have now is bloated, outdated and inefficient. A terrible waste of tax dollars at a huge lost opportunity cost.

    • Agree if private sector ran the FAA, the whole system would be optimized for commercial jets. There is zero to near zero profit with ATC managing small planes.

      Issue I have with the FAA is the organization has become hyper risk adverse, meaning no one has ever lost their government job by saying “No”, and “yes” adds accountability. Have a quiet conservation with anyone trying to get an STC approved, even a simple one. Years of meetings with a daisy chain of ever more requests for data and meetings reaches into stacks of paperwork.

      Proof? Read the story regarding GAMI’s approval of 100UL STC.

      • Since most FAA regs are written in blood, a private sector regulating authority would only add to the bleeding. From an operations and airworthiness standpoint, the ‘profit is worth the risk’ mentality is already too imbalanced and if industry was allowed to regulate itself, the multitude of dead bodies would soar.

        And you can thank the lawyers for the bureaucracy in the STC process. The FAA does and will eat their own to cover the agency should any approval be found to be a contributing factor in an accident. And the inspector workforce is very aware of that.

    • In general I am against government overreach and would agree that some government institutions should be abolished like the department of education but I feel that although bloated and inefficient and in some ways negative, overall the FAA does a decent job.

      I came to appreciate this more when I became IFR rated and experienced first hand the IFR system.

  2. Funding for infrastructure projects. I know I am beating a dead horse here, but 1 runway has been closed for 10 years at my airport.

    No money to fix it, but there’s money to move our casino….

  3. Instead of thanking Congress for the extension, Bolen should be blasting them for not sitting down and actually working out the issues and just getting this done. It appears that the only thing Congress is capable of doing these days is kicking the various cans down the road rather than trying to work with the other side of the aisle on compromise.

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