FAA Funding Debate - AOPA's Position

AOPA FAA Funding Debate

AOPA's position: Our unique system works for all Americans

Stay with what's working

AOPA LogoThe United States has the largest, safest, most efficient air transportation system in the world—a system developed and funded by simple, efficient taxes on aviation fuel, passenger tickets, and air cargo. A system created without the imposition of user fees.

Why impose a system that has proven expensive, unstable, and inefficient in other parts of the world—places with smaller, less complex aviation transportation systems than our own?

The existing system works, and there's enough money to fund modernization programs and maintain the aviation infrastructure without unfairly burdening pilots or sacrificing safety.

Comparisons to the rest of the world are meaningless, because flying here is unlike flying anywhere else.

More airports

Only the United States has an air transportation network with an airport in nearly every community. We have more airports (5,400 public-use airports / 18,000 landing facilities) than any other country—nearly four times more than second-place Brazil.

The airlines serve only 540 of those airports, with most airline flights going between just 30 hub airports.

More aircraft

The United States has more general aviation aircraft than the rest of the world combined. In fact, 68 percent of the world's GA aircraft are based and flown in the United States.

More efficient

U.S. air traffic controllers are the most efficient in the world, performing more operations per controller at a lower cost per operation than their counterparts elsewhere.

More money

The U.S. aviation industry is worth $190 billion and generates a foreign trade surplus for our economy. GA in the United States has an annual economic impact exceeding $11 billion and employs more than 1.3 million Americans in high-skill, high-wage jobs.

More pilots

The United States has more pilots than any other country—fully 60 percent of the world's total. And only in the United States can someone of moderate means afford to fly. Contrary to the image of pilots as wealthy, the majority of AOPA members have family incomes between $35,000 and $100,00 a year, the same as the general U.S. population.

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