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Title of Law:FAA Reauthorization and Reform Act of 2011
Law #:Public Law 112- 95
Passed by Congress:112th Congress (2nd Session)

The following are excerpts, highlighted in red, from the final legislation and/or conference report which contain references to and studies for The National Academies. (Pound signs [##] between passages denote the deletion of unrelated text.)

HR658 Mica (R-Fla.) 02/06/12
Enrolled (finally passed both houses)
To amend title 49, United States Code, to authorize appropriations for the Federal Aviation Administration for fiscal years 2011 through 2014, to streamline programs, create efficiencies, reduce waste, and improve aviation safety and capacity, to provide stable funding for the national aviation system, and for other purposes.
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TITLE II—NEXTGEN AIR TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM AND AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL MODERNIZATION

######

SEC. 212. EXPERT REVIEW OF ENTERPRISE ARCHITECTURE FOR NEXTGEN.

(a) Review.—The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall enter into an arrangement with the National Research Council to review the enterprise architecture for the NextGen.

(b) Contents.—At a minimum, the review to be conducted under subsection (a) shall—

(1) highlight the technical activities, including human-system design, organizational design, and other safety and human factor aspects of the system, that will be necessary to successfully transition current and planned modernization programs to the future system envisioned by the Joint Planning and Development Office of the Administration;

(2) assess technical, cost, and schedule risk for the software development that will be necessary to achieve the expected benefits from a highly automated air traffic management system and the implications for ongoing modernization projects; and

(3) determine how risks with automation efforts for the NextGen can be mitigated based on the experiences of other public or private entities in developing complex, software-intensive systems.

(c) Report.—Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a report containing the results of the review conducted pursuant to subsection (a).

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TITLE VI—FAA EMPLOYEES AND ORGANIZATION

######

SEC. 605. FAA TECHNICAL TRAINING AND STAFFING.

(a) Study.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall conduct a study to assess the adequacy of the Administrator’s technical training strategy and improvement plan for airway transportation systems specialists (in this section referred to as “FAA systems specialists”).

(2) CONTENTS.—The study shall include—

(A) a review of the current technical training strategy and improvement plan for FAA systems specialists;

(B) recommendations to improve the technical training strategy and improvement plan needed by FAA systems specialists to be proficient in the maintenance of the latest technologies;

(C) a description of actions that the Administration has undertaken to ensure that FAA systems specialists receive up-to-date training on the latest technologies; and

(D) a recommendation regarding the most cost-effective approach to provide training to FAA systems specialists.

(3) REPORT.—Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a report on the results of the study.

(b) Workload of Systems Specialists.—

(1) STUDY BY NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES.—Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall make appropriate arrangements for the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a study of the assumptions and methods used by the Federal Aviation Administration to estimate staffing needs for FAA systems specialists to ensure proper maintenance and certification of the national airspace system.

(2) CONSULTATION.—In conducting the study, the National Academy of Sciences shall—

(A) consult with the exclusive bargaining representative certified under section 7111 of title 5, United States Code; and

(B) include recommendations for objective staffing standards that maintain the safety of the national airspace system.

(3) REPORT.—Not later than 1 year after the initiation of the arrangements under paragraph (1), the National Academy of Sciences shall submit to Congress a report on the results of the study.

SEC. 606. SAFETY CRITICAL STAFFING.

(a) In General.—Not later than October 1, 2012, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall implement, in as cost-effective a manner as possible, the staffing model for aviation safety inspectors developed pursuant to the National Academy of Sciences study entitled “Staffing Standards for Aviation Safety Inspectors”. In doing so, the Administrator shall consult with interested persons, including the exclusive bargaining representative for aviation safety inspectors certified under section 7111 of title 5, United States Code.

(b) Report.—Not later than January 1 of each year beginning after September 30, 2012, the Administrator shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate, the staffing model described in subsection (a).

######

SEC. 608. FAA AIR TRAFFIC CONTROLLER STAFFING.

(a) Study by National Academy of Sciences.—Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall enter into appropriate arrangements with the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a study of the air traffic controller standards used by the Federal Aviation Administration (in this section referred to as the “FAA”) to estimate staffing needs for FAA air traffic controllers to ensure the safe operation of the national airspace system in the most cost effective manner.

(b) Consultation.—In conducting the study, the National Academy of Sciences shall consult with the exclusive bargaining representative of employees of the FAA certified under section 7111 of title 5, United States Code, and other interested parties, including Government and industry representatives.

(c) Contents.—The study shall include—

(1) an examination of representative information on productivity, human factors, traffic activity, and improved technology and equipment used in air traffic control;

(2) an examination of recent National Academy of Sciences reviews of the complexity model performed by MITRE Corporation that support the staffing standards models for the en route air traffic control environment; and

(3) consideration of the Administration’s current and estimated budgets and the most cost-effective staffing model to best leverage available funding.

(d) Report.—Not later than 2 years after the date of enactment of this Act, the National Academy of Sciences shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a report on the results of the study.

######

TITLE IX—FEDERAL AVIATION RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

######

SEC. 905. RESEARCH ON DESIGN FOR CERTIFICATION.

Section 44505 is amended—

(1) by redesignating subsection (d) as subsection (e); and

(2) by inserting after subsection (c) the following:

“(d) Research on Design for Certification.—

“(1) RESEARCH.—Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, the Administrator shall conduct research on methods and procedures to improve both confidence in and the timeliness of certification of new technologies for their introduction into the national airspace system.

“(2) RESEARCH PLAN.—Not later than 6 months after the date of enactment of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, the Administrator shall develop a plan for the research under paragraph (1) that contains objectives, proposed tasks, milestones, and a 5-year budgetary profile.

“(3) REVIEW.—The Administrator shall enter into an arrangement with the National Research Council to conduct an independent review of the plan developed under paragraph (2) and shall provide the results of that review to the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate not later than 18 months after the date of enactment of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012.”.

######

SEC. 919. AIRPORT SUSTAINABILITY PLANNING WORKING GROUP.

(a) In General.—Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall prepare and submit a problem statement to the Transportation Research Board for the purpose of initiating a study under the Airport Cooperative Research Program on airport sustainability practices.

(b) Functions.—The purpose of the study shall be—

(1) to examine and develop best airport practices and metrics for the sustainable design, construction, planning, maintenance, and operation of an airport;

(2) to examine potential standards for a rating system based on the best sustainable practices and metrics;

(3) to examine potential standards for a voluntary airport rating process based on the best sustainable practices, metrics, and ratings; and

(4) to examine and develop recommendations for future actions with regard to sustainability.

(c) Report.—Not later than 18 months after the date of initiation of the study, a report on the study shall be submitted to the Administrator and the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate.

######

************************************************************************************
HRpt 112-381 - To accompany H.R. 658 – To amend title 49, United States Code, to authorize appropriations for the Federal Aviation Administration for fiscal years 2011 through 2014, to streamline programs, create efficiencies, reduce waste, and improve aviation safety and capacity, to provide stable funding for the national aviation system, and for other purposes.
Conference Committee
(02/01/12)
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######

TITLE II—NEXTGEN AIR TRANSPORTATION SYSTEM AND AIR TRAFFIC CONTROL MODERNIZATION

######

SEC. 212. EXPERT REVIEW OF ENTERPRISE ARCHITECTURE FOR NEXTGEN.

(a) Review.—The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall enter into an arrangement with the National Research Council to review the enterprise architecture for the NextGen.

(b) Contents.—At a minimum, the review to be conducted under subsection (a) shall—

(1) highlight the technical activities, including human-system design, organizational design, and other safety and human factor aspects of the system, that will be necessary to successfully transition current and planned modernization programs to the future system envisioned by the Joint Planning and Development Office of the Administration;

(2) assess technical, cost, and schedule risk for the software development that will be necessary to achieve the expected benefits from a highly automated air traffic management system and the implications for ongoing modernization projects; and

(3) determine how risks with automation efforts for the NextGen can be mitigated based on the experiences of other public or private entities in developing complex, software-intensive systems.

(c) Report.—Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a report containing the results of the review conducted pursuant to subsection (a).

######

TITLE VI—FAA EMPLOYEES AND ORGANIZATION

######

SEC. 605. FAA TECHNICAL TRAINING AND STAFFING.

(a) Study.—

(1) IN GENERAL.—The Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall conduct a study to assess the adequacy of the Administrator’s technical training strategy and improvement plan for airway transportation systems specialists (in this section referred to as “FAA systems specialists”).

(2) CONTENTS.—The study shall include—

(A) a review of the current technical training strategy and improvement plan for FAA systems specialists;

(B) recommendations to improve the technical training strategy and improvement plan needed by FAA systems specialists to be proficient in the maintenance of the latest technologies;

(C) a description of actions that the Administration has undertaken to ensure that FAA systems specialists receive up-to-date training on the latest technologies; and

(D) a recommendation regarding the most cost-effective approach to provide training to FAA systems specialists.

(3) REPORT.—Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a report on the results of the study.

(b) Workload of Systems Specialists.—

(1) STUDY BY NATIONAL ACADEMY OF SCIENCES. —Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall make appropriate arrangements for the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a study of the assumptions and methods used by the Federal Aviation Administration to estimate staffing needs for FAA systems specialists to ensure proper maintenance and certification of the national airspace system.

(2) CONSULTATION.—In conducting the study, the National Academy of Sciences shall—

(A) consult with the exclusive bargaining representative certified under section 7111 of title 5, United States Code; and

(B) include recommendations for objective staffing standards that maintain the safety of the national airspace system.

(3) REPORT.—Not later than 1 year after the initiation of the arrangements under paragraph (1), the National Academy of Sciences shall submit to Congress a report on the results of the study.

SEC. 606. SAFETY CRITICAL STAFFING.

(a) In General.—Not later than October 1, 2012, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall implement, in as cost-effective a manner as possible, the staffing model for aviation safety inspectors developed pursuant to the National Academy of Sciences study entitled “Staffing Standards for Aviation Safety Inspectors”. In doing so, the Administrator shall consult with interested persons, including the exclusive bargaining representative for aviation safety inspectors certified under section 7111 of title 5, United States Code.

(b) Report.—Not later than January 1 of each year beginning after September 30, 2012, the Administrator shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate, the staffing model described in subsection (a).

######

SEC. 608. FAA AIR TRAFFIC CONTROLLER STAFFING.

(a) Study by National Academy of Sciences.—Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration shall enter into appropriate arrangements with the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a study of the air traffic controller standards used by the Federal Aviation Administration (in this section referred to as the “FAA”) to estimate staffing needs for FAA air traffic controllers to ensure the safe operation of the national airspace system in the most cost effective manner.

(b) Consultation.—In conducting the study, the National Academy of Sciences shall consult with the exclusive bargaining representative of employees of the FAA certified under section 7111 of title 5, United States Code, and other interested parties, including Government and industry representatives.

(c) Contents.—The study shall include—

(1) an examination of representative information on productivity, human factors, traffic activity, and improved technology and equipment used in air traffic control;

(2) an examination of recent National Academy of Sciences reviews of the complexity model performed by MITRE Corporation that support the staffing standards models for the en route air traffic control environment; and

(3) consideration of the Administration’s current and estimated budgets and the most cost-effective staffing model to best leverage available funding.

(d) Report.—Not later than 2 years after the date of enactment of this Act, the National Academy of Sciences shall submit to the Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate a report on the results of the study.

######

TITLE IX—FEDERAL AVIATION RESEARCH AND DEVELOPMENT

######

SEC. 905. RESEARCH ON DESIGN FOR CERTIFICATION.

Section 44505 is amended—

(1) by redesignating subsection (d) as subsection (e); and

(2) by inserting after subsection (c) the following:

“(d) Research on Design for Certification.—

“(1) RESEARCH.—Not later than 1 year after the date of enactment of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, the Administrator shall conduct research on methods and procedures to improve both confidence in and the timeliness of certification of new technologies for their introduction into the national airspace system.

“(2) RESEARCH PLAN.—Not later than 6 months after the date of enactment of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012, the Administrator shall develop a plan for the research under paragraph (1) that contains objectives, proposed tasks, milestones, and a 5-year budgetary profile.

“(3) REVIEW.—The Administrator shall enter into an arrangement with the National Research Council to conduct an independent review of the plan developed under paragraph (2) and shall provide the results of that review to the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate not later than 18 months after the date of enactment of the FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012.”.

######

SEC. 919. AIRPORT SUSTAINABILITY PLANNING WORKING GROUP.

(a) In General.—Not later than 90 days after the date of enactment of this Act, the Administrator shall prepare and submit a problem statement to the Transportation Research Board for the purpose of initiating a study under the Airport Cooperative Research Program on airport sustainability practices.

(b) Functions.—The purpose of the study shall be—

(1) to examine and develop best airport practices and metrics for the sustainable design, construction, planning, maintenance, and operation of an airport;

(2) to examine potential standards for a rating system based on the best sustainable practices and metrics;

(3) to examine potential standards for a voluntary airport rating process based on the best sustainable practices, metrics, and ratings; and

(4) to examine and develop recommendations for future actions with regard to sustainability.

(c) Report.—Not later than 18 months after the date of initiation of the study, a report on the study shall be submitted to the Administrator and the Committee on Science, Space, and Technology of the House of Representatives and the Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation of the Senate.

######

PILOT FATIGUE

House bill

No similar provision.

Senate bill

Section 506 requires a study of pilot fatigue to be conducted by the National Academy of Sciences and for the FAA to consider the study’s findings as part of its rulemaking proceeding on pilot flight time limitations and rest requirements.

Conference Substitute

Senate provision dropped because it is included in P.L. 111-216, the Airline Safety and Federal Aviation Administration Extension Act of 2010.

######

INTEGRATION OF CIVIL UNMANNED AIRCRAFT SYSTEMS INTO

NATIONAL AIRSPACE SYSTEM

House bill

Section 322 requires the Secretary of Transportation to develop a plan, in consultation with aviation and Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS) industry representatives, within nine months of enactment, for the safe integration of civil UASs into the National Airspace (NAS). This plan must contain a review of technologies and research to assist in this goal, recommendations for a rulemaking on the definition of acceptable standards, ensure civil UASs have sense and avoid capability, develop standards and requirements for operator and pilots of UASs, and recommendations. The plan must include a realistic time frame for UAS integration into the NAS, but no later than September 30, 2015. The plan must be submitted to Congress within one year of enactment. The FAA is required to initiate a Notice of Proposed Rulemaking (NPRM) for site integration of UAS within 18 months of the date of enactment of the integration plan.

Senate bill

Section 320 requires the FAA to develop a plan within one year to accelerate the integration of UASs into the NAS. This plan must include: 1) a pilot project that includes the integration of UAS into six test sites, representing geographic and climate differences within the United States, by 2012; 2) development of certification, flight standards, and air traffic requirements for UASs; 3) the dedication of funding for research on UAS certification, flight standards, and air traffic control (ATC); 4) coordination of research between NASA and DOD; and 5) verification of the safety of UASs before their integration into the NAS. This section would allow the FAA Administrator to include testing at six test sites as part of the integration plan by 2012. The FAA is directed to work with DOD to certify and develop flight standards for military unmanned aerial systems and to integrate these systems into the NAS as part of the UAS integration plan. The FAA Administrator is required to submit a report describing and assessing the progress made in establishing special use airspace for DOD to develop detection techniques for small UASs.

Section 607 allows the FAA to conduct developmental research on UASs. It would direct the FAA and the National Academy of Sciences to create an assessment of UAS capabilities and would require the National Academy of Sciences to submit a report to Congress on the subject. It requires the FAA to issue a rule to update the most recent policy statement on UASs. The FAA is directed to identify permanent areas in the Arctic where UASs may operate 24 hours a day. The FAA is to take part in cost-share pilot projects designed to accelerate the safe integration of UASs into the NAS.

Conference Substitute

House and Senate bills merged. The conference committee directs the Secretary to develop a plan to accelerate the safe integration of unmanned aircraft systems (UAS) into the national airspace system. The Secretary is directed to develop the plan in consultation with the aviation industry, federal agencies using UASs, and the UAS industry as soon as practicable, but no later than September 30, 2015. Concurrent with the integration planning, the Secretary is directed to publish, and update annually, a five-year roadmap describing the activities of the FAA’s Unmanned Aircraft Program Office, and its efforts to safely integrate UASs into the national airspace system. The conference committee also directs the Secretary to promulgate rules to allow for integration of small UASs into the national airspace system. The conference committee also directs the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration to establish six test ranges until September 30, 2020. Test range locations are not designated in the legislation. Instead, the Administrator is directed to coordinate with, and leverage resources from, the National Aeronautics and Space Administration and the Department of Defense to select the test ranges based on the criteria set forth in this section. This language is consistent with legislative direction in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 (Public Law 112-81). The intent of the committee is for the Administrator to establish a total of six test ranges under both laws, and not six ranges to be established under each law for a total of twelve. The conference committee directs the Secretary to develop a plan for the use of UASs in the arctic, as defined in this subtitle. Finally, the term “non-exclusionary airspace” was removed as the FAA does not recognize that term. The conference committee intends that when the FAA establishes the program to integrate UASs into the national airspace system at six test ranges, the Administrator shall safely designate airspace for integrated manned and unmanned flight operations in the national airspace system.

######

FAA TECHNICAL TRAINING AND STAFFING

House bill

Section 603 requires the Administrator to conduct a study on the adequacy of FAA’s technical training strategy and improvement plan for FAA transportation systems specialists. The plan must include: recommendations to improve technical training strategy and improvement planning; a description of actions having been undertaken; and recommendations regarding cost-effective approaches to training. The FAA is to report to Congress within one year of enactment. It directs the Administrator to contract with the National Academy of Sciences within 90 days of enactment to conduct a study on the assumptions and methods FAA uses to estimate staffing needs for FAA transportation systems specialists and to ensure proper maintenance and certification in the most cost-effective manner. The Academy must submit its report to Congress one year after contracted.

Senate bill

Section 708(a) and (b) similar provisions but it requires the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) to study FAA Airway Transportation Systems Specialists training and report to Congress within a year of enactment. It includes air traffic controllers and engineers as part of the study; and, the Academy must report to Congress on its study 24 months after the date of execution of the contract for the study.

Conference Substitute

House bill modified removing language requiring the study to be done in the most cost effective manner. The modified provision directs the National Academy of Sciences, when conducting the study on the assumptions and methods used by FAA to estimate staffing needs for FAA systems specialists, to consult with the exclusive bargaining representative of systems specialists. Additionally, language was added requiring the National Academy of Sciences to “include recommendations for objective staffing standards that maintain the safety of the national airspace.”

SAFETY CRITICAL STAFFING

House bill

Section 604 requires the Administrator to implement, to the extent practicable and in the most cost-effective manner, the staffing model for aviation safety inspectors by October 1, 2011, following the recommendations outlined in the “Staffing Standards for Aviation Inspectors” report issued by the National Academy of Sciences in 2007. The FAA is required to consult with interested parties, including aviation safety inspectors, and submit the staffing model to Congress on an annual basis.

Senate bill

Section 708(c) and (d) directs the FAA to increase inspector staffing to levels in its staffing model. The Administrator is required to develop a staffing model for aviation safety inspectors, but differs from the House in that it allows 12 months from the date of enactment, development of a staffing model, but does not require the Administrator to follow the Academy’s recommendations, and requires inspector staffing levels to be at least at the levels indicated in the staffing model. It specifies that no later than 180 days after enactment, the Administrator shall submit a report to Congress on the future of flight service stations in Alaska. The report will include: 1) an analysis of the number of flight service specials needed; 2) training needed and need for formal training and hiring program; 3) a schedule for necessary inspections, 4) upgrades and modernization of stations and equipment; and 5) a description of interaction between flight service stations operated by FAA and those operated by contractors.

Conference Substitute

House bill modified to require the FAA to consult with the exclusive bargaining representative for aviation safety inspectors when implementing the staffing model. Additionally, the date of the report was changed from October 1 of each year to January 1 of each year.

######

FAA AIR TRAFFIC CONTROLLER STAFFING

House bill

Section 605 directs the FAA to enter into an arrangement, within 90 days, with the National Academy of Sciences to conduct a study of the air traffic controller standard used by the FAA to estimate staffing needs for FAA air traffic controllers to ensure the safe operation of the NAS in the most cost-effective manner. The study must include examination of representative information on productivity, human factors, traffic activity, and improved technology on ATC, as well as an examination of recent Academy reviews of models from MITRE, and consideration of Administration’s current and estimated budgets. The Academy is required to consult employee groups and industry representative in conducting the study. The Academy must transmit the study to Congress within two years of enactment.

Senate bill

Section 708 is a similar provision, but it includes Airway Transportation Systems Specialists and engineers as part of the study.

Conference Substitute

House bill modified to require the National Academy of Sciences to consult with the exclusive bargaining representative of air traffic controllers in conducting the study.

######

DEFINITIONS

House bill

Section 1001 defines the terms “Administrator”, “FAA”, “Institution of Higher Education”, “NASA”, “National Research Council”, “NOAA”, and “Secretary”.

Senate bill

No similar provision.

Conference Substitute

House bill.

######

RESEARCH ON DESIGN FOR CERTIFICATION

House bill

Section 1006 requires the Administrator to conduct research on methods and procedures to improve confidence in and the timeliness of certification of new technologies for introduction into the NAS within one year. It specifies that not later than six months after enactment, the FAA will develop a plan for the research that contains objectives, proposed tasks, milestones and a five year budget profile. The Administrator will enter into an arrangement with the National Research Council to conduct an independent review of the plan not later than 18 months after the date of enactment, with results of the review provided to Congress.

Senate bill

No similar provision.

Conference Substitute

House bill.

######

EXPERT REVIEW OF ENTERPRISE ARCHITECTURE FOR NEXTGEN

House bill

Section 212 directs the Administrator to enter into an arrangement with the National Research Council to review the enterprise architecture for NextGen. Also, the Administrator must report to Congress within one year on the results of this review.

Senate bill

Section 314 directs the Administrator to publish a report within six months, after consultation with stakeholders, including the development of: 1) RNP/RNAV procedures at 137 airports; 2) a description of the activities required for their implementation; 3) an implementation plan that includes baseline and performance metrics; 4) assessment of the benefits/costs of using third parties to develop the procedures; and 5) a process for the creation of future RNP and RNAV procedures. The Administrator must implement 30 percent of the procedures within 18 months of enactment, 60 percent within 36 months of enactment, and 100 percent by 2014. The Administrator is directed to create a plan for the implementation of procedures at the remaining airports across the country. It would require 25 percent of the procedures at these airports to be implemented within 18 months after enactment, 50 percent within 30 months after enactment; 75 percent within 42 months after enactment, and 100 percent before 2016. The charter of the Performance Based Navigation ARC is extended and directs it to establish priorities for development of RNP/RNAV procedures based on potential safety and congestion benefits. It would require that the process of the development of such procedures be subject to a previously established environmental review process. The FAA is directed to provide Congress with a deployment plan for the implementation of a nationwide data communications system to support NextGen ATC, and a report evaluating the ability of NextGen technologies to facilitate improved performance standards for aircraft in the NAS.

Conference Substitute

House bill modified to direct the FAA to “enter into an arrangement for an independent external review” to conduct the review, rather than the Administrator.

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