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Congress passes notam bill

System overhaul required

Legislation that would establish a task force on improving notices to air missions—and require the FAA to develop and implement a new notam system—is headed to the president's desk.

The Capitol is home to the U.S. Congress and its House and Senate governing bodies, which have influence over general aviation. Photo by David Tulis.

The House passed the Senate-amended version of H.R. 346, the NOTAM Improvement Act of 2023, on May 22, following the passage of the bill by unanimous consent in the Senate on May 9.

H.R. 346 requires the FAA to create a task force—consisting of aviation industry professionals, safety experts, and unions—to review existing methods for publishing notams to pilots. The group would examine regulations, policies, and systems to provide informed recommendations to Congress. The bill also sets a deadline for the FAA to implement the new notam system and a backup.

A version of the bill was first introduced in 2021 to establish a task force to improve the notam system, but the bill was never considered by the Senate. After a notam outage grounded airplanes nationwide in January, Reps. Pete Stauber (R-Minn.) and Mark DeSaulnier (D-Calif.) reintroduced the bill in January which passed the House later that month.

Senators Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), Jerry Moran (R-Kan.), and Shelly Moore Capito (R-W.Va.) introduced the companion bill in the Senate where it was later amended to include directing the FAA to finish modernizing the NOTAM system and create a backup system by September 30, 2024.

AOPA worked closely with industry stakeholders to include in the Senate version of the bill a realistic, but pressing, timeline for the FAA.

“These changes to the notam system are long overdue,” said AOPA Senior Vice President of Government Affairs Jim Coon. “AOPA appreciates the bipartisan effort to ensure pilots can feel safe operating in an accurate and updated system.”

Lillian Geil
Communications Specialist
Communications Specialist Lillian Geil is a student pilot and a graduate of Columbia University who joined AOPA in 2021.
Topics: Advocacy, Capitol Hill, Notams

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