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Fri, Nov 09, 2012

FAA May Move Training Facility Out Of Florida

But Functions Of The Management And Training Conference Center May Be Dispersed

Last year, the FAA was planning to move its Management Training and Conference Center from Palm Coast, FL, to Kansas City, MO ... a move opposed and eventually blocked by Florida Republican Congressman John Mica, Chair of the House Transportation Committee, and at the time that district's representative.

Redistricting took Palm Coast out of Mica's district, and the FAA is once again looking at the center. But there has not yet been a decision whether the facility and its functions will move wholesale to another city, or be dispersed to multiple locations across the country.

According to the Kansas City Star, the FAA said in a statement that the agency "is evaluating future requirements and budget considerations to develop a more comprehensive and flexible management training program. We expect to issue a new solicitation for management training soon. All qualified parties, including our current contractors, will have the opportunity to compete for the new training contract.”

The center draws as many as 250 FAA managers at a time for training, which is a boon for hotels and restaurants located nearby. Kansas City officials had estimated that the center could account for as many as 20,000 more room nights each year ... "heads in beds" as they're known in the hospitality industry.

When the original proposal went out in 2011, Kansas City had been selected as the new home for the center. Mica introduced legislation that required the FAA to expand its search criteria to allow Palm Coast to be competitive. The center currently leases space from Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University in Daytona, but is 75 miles from the closest major airport, Jacksonville International (KJAX). The original search criteria had specified a distance not more than 25 miles from a major airport.

The Daytona Beach News-Journal reports that ERAU officials have not been asked about a renewal of the center's lease.

FMI: www.faa.gov

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