EAA opposes Trump plan to privatize air traffic control

Wittman Airport control tower during EAA AirVenture 2016 (WBAY photo)

OSHKOSH, Wis. (WBAY) - Oshkosh-based EAA is joining other aviation groups opposing a proposal to privatize the nation's air traffic control system.

President Trump wants to separate the Federal Aviation Administration from control tower operations. He says overhauling the system and handing it over as a not-for-profit operation would improve customer service by reducing costs, reducing wait times, and improving technology.

EAA Chairman/CEO Jack J. Pelton told Action 2 News, "If you look down the road -- 10,000-plus airplanes flying here -- and to get a bill where they would have to pay the new private entity to fly their airplane here would cause many people to just drop out of general aviation as we know it today."

The Experimental Aircraft Association and 15 other general aviation groups sent a letter to President Trump on Monday laying out their concerns. Click here to read the full letter (PDF format).

They write, "the U.S. air traffic control system is the best in the world" and privatizing it would make it worse.

In an earlier statement, Pelton wrote, "This proposal is a solution in search of a problem. EAA supports modernization of the American airspace system, and progress is happening with the input of all the system's stakeholders."

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