The new year has arrived, and 2023 promises to be a momentous one for business aviation for several reasons, not the least of which will be the need to craft legislation to reauthorize the FAA. The current law authorizing the agency’s operations is scheduled to expire on Sept. 30.
Rather than simply a perfunctory legislative exercise to rubber stamp business as usual at the FAA, the new reauthorization bill represents an opportunity to ensure that business aviation’s interests are protected and advanced. NBAA has already identified priorities and is working on targeted solutions to the industry’s challenges.
When I testified in July 2022 before the U.S. House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Aviation Subcommittee, I detailed for Congress a policy roadmap for strengthening the general aviation sector, both in the near and long term.
I urged lawmakers to facilitate access to emerging aviation technologies, including advanced air mobility (AAM), in order to maintain America’s global leadership in aviation. In addition, I called on the federal government to partner with industry to protect the privacy of flight, advance aviation sustainability and help address aviation’s continuing workforce challenges.
Specifically, I recommended that Congress:
- Build on the successful implementation of the next-generation ATC system and maintain congressional oversight of the system, along with the current tax structure to support the Aviation Funding Stability Act and Airport and Airway Trust Fund.
- Ensure that the FAA takes steps to protect business aviation from 5G telecommunications interference and to safeguard the privacy of general aviation travelers, who are easily tracked by “cyber-stalkers.”
- Enact the blender’s tax credit to increase the production, availability and use of sustainable aviation fuel.
- Support transformative technologies so that aircraft can be powered by electric, hybrid and hydrogen propulsion. In a related effort, I called on the federal government to help pave the way for the expansion of aviation infrastructure to support the growth of AAM.
- Enact policy changes and recruitment efforts to help the industry meet its need for 600,000 new pilots, maintenance technicians and other aviation professionals over the next 20 years.
The current Congress already has moved to address some of these issues. For example, in June 2022 the House formed an AAM Caucus and passed NBAA-supported AAM legislation.
NBAA looks forward to engaging with the new Congress and federal regulators to develop policy solutions that address challenges related to aviation safety, security, innovation, sustainability and talent development. We encourage you and other business aviation stakeholders to contact your elected representatives to make sure that the final FAA reauthorization bill reflects your priorities and helps move our industry forward.