Nov. 11, 2020

The fiscal year 2021 spending proposal for Transportation, Housing and Urban Development from the Senate Committee on Appropriations advances legislative priorities advocated by NBAA that ensure the success of the country’s aviation sector by protecting the privacy of aircraft owners and operators and continuing to oppose any efforts to privatize the nation’s ATC system.

Since Oct. 1, government agencies have been operating under a continuing resolution that maintained FY2020 funding levels until Dec. 11. Now that the Senate has released its appropriations bills, the Senate and the House of Representatives can seek to reconcile their FY2021 spending bills.

View the Senate’s fiscal 2021 DOT appropriations bill (PDF)

The Senate measure contains NBAA-supported language to enhance privacy and security protections for business aircraft owners and operators. This provision calls for the FAA to provide a program that allows private aircraft operators to block their Mode S transponder code, flight identification, call sign, or similar identifying information from real-time or near real-time public tracking. This language codifies the Limiting Aircraft Data Displayed, or LADD, program and will help advance future efforts to secure the flight tracking information of business aircraft.

The Senate bill also acknowledges the NextGen Advisory Committee’s significant contribution to air traffic control modernization and applauds the direction provided by its members, which include representatives from general aviation, commercial aviation, labor organizations, airports, local community representatives and the federal government.

Read more on the House FY2021 funding bill.

Senate appropriators are also clear in their opposition to any efforts to privatize the air traffic control system, a position that NBAA strongly supports to ensure fair and equal access for all operators.
“The United States has the largest, safest, most efficient, and most complex air traffic control system in the world and the FAA should remain a global leader with a singular and unified mission of safety. The committee does not support any efforts to transfer the FAA’s air traffic functions to a not-for-profit, independent, private corporation,” said Senate appropriators.

Review NBAA’s opposition to ATC privatization resources.

“NBAA thanks the Senate Appropriations Committee and its leadership including Chairman Richard Shelby (R-AL), Vice Chairman Patrick Leahy (D-VT), subcommittee Chair Susan Collins (R-ME) and Ranking Member Jack Reed (D-RI) for recognizing the significant contributions that business aviation provides to our nation’s economy. We appreciate the committee’s leadership in protecting general aviation’s privacy and security and recognizing the importance of maintaining Congressional oversight of our ATC system, said Ed Bolen, NBAA President, and CEO. “We look forward to working collaboratively with the House and Senate as the appropriations process moves forward.”

NBAA members can use the association’s Grassroots Action Center to support this legislation.