New stab at reauthorization includes $13.5b for NextGen

Aviation Week has a look at the legislation and testimony that came out of the House Aviation Subcommittee last week on reauthorization:

While Congress was unable to move the bill forward last year – leaving FAA to operate under a series of short-term extensions, [Committee Chairman Jim] Oberstar last week expressed optimism that the legislation would get passed. “We have a new President and a new Congress. This time we’ll get the job done.” But Oberstar’s counterparts in the Senate have not indicated their plans for long-term reauthorization. Senate Commerce Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller (D-W.Va.) has discussed the possibility of another temporary extension through the end of the year.

[…]  Industry groups believe that an increase in the general fund contribution is “reasonable and appropriate,” said Rockwell Collins Chairman Clay Jones, who was testifying on behalf of the General Aviation Manufacturers Association, the Aerospace Industries Association and Aeronautical Repair Station Association. Jones stressed the need to generate cash to expedite NextGen efforts.

H.R.915 calls for $13.5 billion to accelerate the implementation of NextGen as well as other FAA Facilities & Equipment expenses. In addition, the bill targets specific development funding and elevates the director of the Joint Planning and Development Office to the status of associate administrator of NextGen.

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