TO THE MEMBERS OF THE HOUSE COMMITTEE ON TRANSPORTATION AND INFRASTRUCTURE:
The U.S. Chamber of Commerce congratulates Chairman Bill Shuster on moving forward with a long-term Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill. The Chamber believes that the nation’s economy relies on a safe, secure, and efficient aviation system to create jobs, and improve economic development, global competitiveness, quality of life, and national security. Enactment of a long-term FAA authorization bill would allow the uninterrupted continuation of these critical programs to make long-term investments without the uncertainly an extension of the current program provides.
As the committee marks up H.R. 2997, “The 21st Century Aviation Innovation, Reform, and Reauthorization Act,” we urge you to support the following Chamber priorities:
- Support increased investment for the Airport Improvement Program (AIP). Utilizing all available AIP funding is critical to ensuring aviation users as gaining the maximum benefit to airport investment.
- Support the bill’s provisions that streamline and reform the FAA’s certification process. This much-needed reform will allow U.S. manufacturers to more fairly compete with the rest of the world in the aerospace industry.
- Ensure the continued safe transport of lithium batteries and battery products. The Chamber supports coordinating the United States’ safety efforts with the International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) standards to ensure that international standards are harmonized to facilitate compliance and safety.
- Support efforts to ensure the FAA has the regulatory tools to allow the continued deployment of Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS).
- Support clarification of the federal preemption provision of a trucking statute in the Federal Aviation Administration Authorization Act of 1994 (FAAAA). This clarification will restore the goals Congress intended when it sought national uniformity for motor carriers in the transportation of property, rather than a 50-state patchwork that would inhibit the movement of freight throughout the country.
Finally, the Chamber urges the committee to oppose any amendments that would re-regulate the aviation industry by imposing new requirements on how commercial airlines interact with their customers. Congress rightly deregulated the aviation industry in 1978 and the free market result has allowed for record number of passengers to utilize our aviation network.
The Chamber is committed to working with the House and Senate to enact a long-term FAA authorization bill this year.
Neil L. Bradley