The USA appears to be moving toward separating Air Traffic Control from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) after a US senator said legislation to create a separate ATC organisation could be presented to congress as early as July.
According to reports coming out of the US, the legislation would create a not-for-profit federally-charted organisation, similar to Australia's Airservices and Canada's NavCanada.
The new ATC system would have a corporate structure responsible for its own revenue, expected to be a user-pays system, an idea that the General Aviation Industry rejected when tied to IFR fees under an Obama Administration plan.
Jim Coon Senior Vice President of Government Affairs for the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association said that AOPA was
still opposed to any form of fee-for-service system.
"Although we have yet to see details of the proposed legislation, AOPA believes the current method of collecting revenues
through a tax on Aviation fuel is not broken,” he told AOPA.org. “Moreover, we believe any Air Traffic system must
preserve GA access to Airports and Airspace on a first-come, first-served basis, like we enjoy today.
"There is no doubt that the FAA has spent billions over the years on efforts to modernize our Air Traffic Control System,
and we recognize that change is needed to ensure continued US leadership in Aviation, but we must avoid any unintended
consequences for General Aviation.
"We’ve seen issues in other countries where General Aviation has been put aside and we can’t allow that to happen in this
ATC service providers separate from the National Aviation Authority are already in place in several countries including Australia, Canada, Germany, New Zealand and the United Kingdom.