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Monday, May 27, 2024

General Aviation Industry Reboots For FAA Funding

With Congress failing to pass a bill to fund the Federal Aviation Administration, general aviation industry officials will lobby their side with a new slate of lawmakers come January. This time, however, an easier time is expected of convincing Congress to maintain the current method of funding with a fuel tax rather than switching to a user fee, a method preferred by the major commercial airlines. The message of keeping the fuel tax resonated on Capitol Hill, said Ed Bolen, president and CEO of the National Business Aviation Association at the group’s annual convention taking place in Orlando. The general aviation industry, which includes aircraft charter and management companies and private aircraft owners, has momentum on their side when the new Congress convenes next year and renews the process of crafting FAA reauthorization legislation. “We know we can get together and organize and mobilize,” Bolen said. The funding bill for the Airport and Airway Trust Fund that pays for the FAA and a next-generation air traffic control system had been set to expire Sept. 30, 2007 but extensions have kept it going since then. The most recent extension expires in March. The House approved its version of the bill in September 2007 but the Senate version failed primarily over tacked-on non-aviation amendments.

Mark Madler
Mark Madler
Mark R. Madler covers aviation & aerospace, manufacturing, technology, automotive & transportation, media & entertainment and the Antelope Valley. He joined the company in February 2006. Madler previously worked as a reporter for the Burbank Leader. Before that, he was a reporter for the City News Bureau of Chicago and several daily newspapers in the suburban Chicago area. He has a bachelor’s of science degree in journalism from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign.

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