Every few years over the last decade or so, administrations from both parties have periodically called for the privatization of Air Traffic Control. “Assurances” are usually given that this will only affect large, heavy aircraft and that small GA airplanes will continue to fly and utilize ATC services for free like they do now. (Actually, nothing is free: We pay for those services through our aviation fuel taxes.) If you believe that line — that only the big airplanes will get charged per IFR approach or radar services — you probably believe that you can buy dry land in the Everglades. Yes, it may start out that way, but then, before we know it, we’ll have a system like the E.U. countries do. Call ground for taxi clearance? It will be on your invoice. Practice a couple of instrument approaches? Get out your wallet. This issue has re-emerged, and our flying colleagues at AOPA and NBAA are asking all of us to contact our Congressional representatives to tell them not to vote for privatization. For more information, please see the link, below….
Dan Schwartz, President, San Juan Pilots Association