October 19, 2017 - With the House of Representatives returning to Washington, D.C. next week, it’s expected that supporters of ATC privatization will make another run at getting H.R. 2997 to the House floor for a vote. The bill includes provisions that would hand control of the U.S. National Airspace System (NAS) from the FAA to a private nonprofit corporation dominated by airline and other commercial interests, a scenario with devastating consequences for general aviation in this country.
The voices of EAA members and other aviators have been heard in Washington; your opposition has to date kept the bill from reaching the House floor. That said, it is expected that the House majority whip will attempt to gather enough votes for passage over the next two weeks. It’s important to keep the voices of opposition in front of lawmakers as they are pressured to vote for the measure.
“We knew in many ways this battle would be a marathon instead of a sprint,” said EAA CEO and Chairman of the Board Jack J. Pelton. “What GA pilots have done in a grassroots way in the face of millions of dollars in lobbying from airline interests is remarkable, but it’s important to keep our message flowing to Washington, prevent the airline-ization of the national air traffic system, and maintain freedom of flight for everyone, not just for-profit interests.”
The ATCNotForSale.com website is a quick and effective way to reach your House representative. Tens of thousands of people have already used the website to directly contact their legislators.
In addition, this week Chesley “Sully” Sullenberger, pilot of the 2009 Miracle on the Hudson flight, wrote an editorial for USA Today that blasted the attempt to privatize the ATC system. In the editorial, published on Wednesday, October 18, Sullenberger wrote that “if we go down this road, I’m worried about access. I’m worried about equitability. And, I’m worried about safety.”