Sun, May 01, 2011
Calio Outlines Five Issues Government And Industry Should
The Air Transport Association of America (ATA) is calling on the
Department of Transportation (DOT), Congress and the industry to
turn nearly 20 years of discussion into action and quickly enact a
U.S. national airline policy in order to boost competitiveness and
drive economic growth.
"We already have years of good work and a solid blueprint. We
now need a focused and coordinated commitment from everyone
involved to turn multiple commission recommendations into real
policy with a measurable timeline of accomplishments. ATA is
committed to help lead the development of this timeline, which will
turn aspirations into reality, and to work cooperatively with any
willing partner to make that happen," said ATA President and CEO
Nicholas E. Calio (pictured) in a speech to the National
Chamber Foundation Annual Aviation Summit at the U.S. Chamber of
Calio outlined at least four separate federal commissions,
beginning in 1993, which were formed and worked to develop policy
recommendations to strengthen the U.S. airline industry. Most
recently, the DOT Future of Aviation Advisory Committee produced a
report that outlines many important components needed for a
successful policy. "The issues examined over the years have
remained largely the same and have been discussed in remarkably
similar language," Calio said.
Each commission reached similar conclusions, which are supported
by ATA members:
- Address the rising tax burden.
- Reduce the industry's regulatory burden.
- Expedite implementation of a satellite-based air traffic
- Expand access to global markets.
- Enable the U.S. airline industry to attract investment.
"While the work has been done on paper, we need to turn these
aspirations into measurable actions. A policy, more accurately
recommendations written on paper but not put into practice, is no
policy at all. Talking about it is not going to make it happen. We
need to prioritize funding currently available to the most critical
elements, which will create the most benefits in the short term,"
The urgency of implementation and action is due to the current
inflection point of airlines and aviation in the United States.
Calio described the conflicting conditions of neglect in the system
and overbearing scrutiny, "We can continue the course we are on as
an economy and accept the consequences. Or we can take practical,
positive steps, based on the urgency and opportunity of this
inflection point, and regain our country's global competitive
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