FAA extends SoCal Metroplex comment period

The FAA is extending the public comment period for its Draft Environmental Assessment (EA) of the Southern California Metroplex project to Sept. 8, 2015, to allow for a full 90 days of comment.

The project is a comprehensive proposal to improve the flow of air traffic into and out of Southern California. It proposes to replace dozens of existing conventional air traffic procedures with new satellite-based procedures, which are a key component of the FAA’s Next Generation Air Transportation System (NextGen). [Read more…]

Pilots appointed to House Transportation Committee

Two more pilots are joining the powerful U.S. House of Representatives Transportation and Infrastructure Committee when the 114th Congress convenes in January. The Committee and its Aviation Subcommittee will play a vital role in setting long-term spending priorities for the FAA during the 2015 Reauthorization process.

Rep. Todd Rokita, (R-Ind.), is among the 12 new committee members announced on Dec. 10. Rokita is an active pilot and member of the Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association. He is also an original co-sponsor of the General Aviation Pilot Protection Act (GAPPA), which reforms the third-class medical certification process, as well as a member of the House GA Caucus and one of general aviation’s staunchest allies in Congress.

Also joining the committee is freshman Rep. Brian Babin (R-Texas), an inactive pilot and past AOPA member.

[Read more…]

Sequestration dangers national airspace system

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Sequestration is a danger to the National Airspace System (NAS). That is the message National Air Traffic Controllers Association President Paul Rinaldi delivered Tuesday to the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, for its hearing examining the upcoming FAA reauthorization and issues in modernizing and operating the nation’s airspace.

Rinaldi emphasized the urgent need for funding certainty, to ensure everything from effective NextGen implementation to adequate staffing of air traffic controllers.

[Read more…]

Plans to accelerate NextGen benefits unveiled

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The FAA and the aviation community sent a plan to Congress last week to show how the FAA will accelerate the benefits of key NextGen initiatives over the next three years.

The agreement is the result of several months of collaboration between the agency and the NextGen Advisory Committee, which includes officials from the airlines, airports, general aviation, pilots, labor unions and safety specialists, manufacturers, international aviation, environmentalists and the Department of Defense.

[Read more…]