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The current air traffic control system suffers from a number of structural defects, both technical and organizational in nature. These prevent the system – and our nation – from taking full advantage of technical advances, including next-generation technologies (NextGen), like satellite-based navigation, in a timely and efficient manner.

Throughout its history, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has been slow to modernize its technology and procedures. The FAA remains sluggish in implementing NextGen. This failure has eroded the United States’ global leadership on air traffic management and limited economic growth. The FAA faces challenges in maintaining or replacing legacy systems and facilities because of uncertain budgets, non-operational considerations and governmental impediments to pursuing incremental technological advancements. This situation artificially increases costs and reduces the reliability of operations.

To overcome these challenges, Business Roundtable supports consideration of new models for U.S. air traffic management, such as the government-chartered non-profit model now utilized in Canada, the second busiest national airspace in the world.