Clinton wants FAA operated like a business

Budget of the United States Government Fiscal Year 2001

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President Clinton wants to put management of the Federal Aviation Administration's air traffic control systems on a more business-like basis, proposing in his fiscal 2001 budget that the agency create a performance-based organization for air traffic control services funded through direct user fees.

The president's fiscal 2001 budget request said the FAA can create such a performance-based organization based on existing legislative authority, adding that the administration plans to ask Congress for the additional authority it needs to operate the FAA as a business. This plan follows an emerging global trend, with air traffic service operations in Australia and Canada already privatized, and with the United Kingdom planning later this year to spin off into the private sector its air traffic control operations.

The fiscal 2001 Transportation Department budget also calls for "personnel reform" in the FAA that "will result in a new pay-for-performance system that focuses employees on key agency goals."

To help eliminate the air traffic control system delays that plagued airlines throughout 1999, the administration asked for a 12 percent increase in the FAA's operational budget from 2000 to $699 million and a 22 percent increase in the capital modernization budget to $450 million.

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