Modernization & Infrastructure
(Updated Dec. 2019)
Despite collaborative success between NATCA and the FAA on several NextGen projects, the FAA is still lagging behind in efforts to modernize outdated technology and replace or repair its rapidly aging infrastructure. The recent 35-day government shutdown made these problems worse by halting all FAA modernization programs, causing significant delays and wasting critical resources and federal taxpayer dollars. The FAA must continue to work collaboratively with NATCA to get and keep these programs on track. A stable, predictable funding stream is necessary to continue to modernize the system and improve our aging physical infrastructure.
How This Issue Affects NATCA Members
NATCA and the FAA have achieved several collaborative successes on NextGen projects over the last eight years such as ERAM, DataComm, and Metroplex. Nevertheless, the FAA is still lagging behind in its effort to modernize its technology and upgrade its aging physical infrastructure. Stop-and-go funding, most recently the recent 35-day government shutdown, has already delayed and threatens to further derail these programs. Additionally, any further degradation of controller staffing numbers and/or attacks on official time would cripple the FAA’s ability to deliver NextGen and other modernization technologies on time and under budget.