February 24, 2006
There is no compelling business case for scrapping the current way of funding the FAA for a user fee-based system. So said, Jack Pelton, chairman, president, and CEO of Cessna, during a speech Friday to the Aero Club of Washington.
He outlined five myths used to support the claim that the FAA funding system is broken. "My goal today is to debunk these myths and replace them with some business realities that need to influence the public debate," he said.
"Some who support changes in the FAA's funding mechanisms contend that the agency lacks a stable and predictable funding stream," said Pelton. "I disagree."
Pelton said that history speaks for itself.
"The truth is, the steadiness of the FAA's funding stream over the past decade has been nothing short of remarkable," he said, noting that Congress has routinely replaced money that administrations of both political parties have tried to strip away from the FAA.
Other myths that Pelton debunked include:
Pelton offered a five-plank platform for strengthening the aviation system, including a call to reject user fees and to ensure continuing congressional authority.
"[T]he Report of the National Civil Aviation Review Commission endorsed general aviation fuel taxes as 'the most appropriate way for this important segment of civil aviation to pay its share of system costs,'" said Pelton. "Do not replace a simple, fair, and efficient tax on general aviation with complex user fees."
( Read the complete text of Jack Pelton's no user fees speech.)
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