WASHINGTON. Members of U.S. Congress have filed omnibus spending legislation for Fiscal Year 2018, providing $1.3 trillion in funding through the end of September that includes $18 billion in total budgetary resources for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) and several provisions sought by the National Air Transportation Association (NATA) on behalf of the aviation business community. A six-month extension of FAA authorization, which is currently set to expire 31 March 2018, is also included and runs through 30 September 2018 to provide lawmakers more time to pass a long-term bill.
National Air Transportation Association President Martin H. Hiller’s statement on the funding bill follows:
“The National Air Transportation Association thanks Chairmen Frelinghuysen (R-NJ) and Cochran (R-MS) and Ranking Members Lowey (D-NY) and Leahy (D-VT) for recognizing the growing needs of the aviation industry by providing $1.6 billion in FAA funding above last year’s enacted levels. The additional funding will allow for continued NextGen investment and modernization of our nation’s air traffic control system as well as added certainty for the aviation industry.”
“The spending bill also contains language at NATA’s request that will continue to enhance safety and regulatory consistency for the general aviation business community, including provisions to: streamline the certificate process for maintenance facilities, update a study of the Part 135 community, assess safety trends and identify areas for potential improvement within the on-demand air charter community, and complete work on the top recommendation of the FAA’s Regulatory Consistency ARC to eliminate outdated or conflicting policies within an electronic guidance library. NATA is appreciative to congressional appropriators for their ongoing commitment to general aviation by including these important provisions that continue to make the FAA an effective safety partner with the general aviation community,” Hiller concluded.
The legislation must be passed into law by Friday, March 23, to avert a government shutdown.