A4A CEO: travelers, shippers, US economy gain from ATC reform

Nicholas E. Calio, President and CEO of Airlines for America (A4A), testified before the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee regarding the US airline industry´s support for Congress to improve Air Traffic Control (ATC).

In his testimony, Calio noted that the Aviation Innovation, Reform, and Reauthorization (AIRR) Act represents the most significant reforms to our national air space system in decades. Calio urged all members of the committee and all stakeholders to examine how critical this transformational ATC reform is to the future of our economy, and to the traveling and shipping public who depend on safe, efficient and reliable air transportation in their daily lives.

A4A supports transforming our nation´s Air Traffic Organization system into to a not-for-profit, self-funded, independent organization governed by a board representing all major stakeholders, including the federal government, and protecting the public interest. The AIRR Act will result in more choices, more direct trips, lower fuel consumption, reduced emissions and — importantly — fewer flight delays for the traveling public.

Calio also noted that need for ATC reform has been well documented over the past 30 years, pointing to scores of Congressional hearings, Inspector General and Government Accountability Office reports, studies by at least four presidentially appointed non-partisan commissions and numerous independent private sector experts. Scores of third-party experts have found that the Federal Aviation Administration has not met expectations in delivering the state-of-the-art ATC system the US needs to remain at the forefront of modern aviation technology and innovation.

Annually, commercial aviation helps drive nearly USD1.5 trillion in US economic activity and more than 11 million US jobs. Airlines for America (A4A) vigorously advocates on behalf of the American airline industry as a model of safety, customer service and environmental responsibility and as the indispensable network that drives our nation´s economy and global competitiveness.