April 26, 2018
On behalf of the 12.5 million members of AFL-CIO, we write to voice our support for the FAA reauthorization legislation H.R. 4 as introduced.
Properly funding, updating and improving standards for our federal aviation systems and workforce is critical to keeping our nation at the forefront of the global aviation sector.
The AFL-CIO applauds Chairmen Shuster and LoBiondo, and Ranking Members DeFazio and Larsen on their effort to craft legislation that balances stakeholders’ competing interests. Their bill will not only enhance our aviation system, but also will improve safety for aviation workers and the flying public.
This bipartisan measure, while not perfect, contains numerous policy improvements that earn our support. We urge to you to support the amendments cited below to improve the underlying bill and to reject those that weaken the underlying bill, or undermine critical aviation worker provisions.
Amendments that we urge you to oppose:
- #79, Denham (CA) – This amendment would preempt state regulations that promote safe and fair working conditions for truck drivers, denying these workers the meal and rest break benefits provided under state laws. Congress rejected this provision during consideration of the FAST Act, and it has no place in an FAA Reauthorization. Vote NO on Denham #79.
- #112 McClintock (CA) – This amendment would cut off access to air service for hundreds of small communities across the country by eliminating the Essential Air Service Program (EAS). EAS is a vital lifeline for many rural communities that lack a mature transportation system. Eliminating EAS will further economically isolate these communities and cost aviation jobs. Vote NO on McClintock #112.
- #63, King (IA) – This amendment would repeal Davis-Bacon prevailing wage requirements for construction projects covered under this Act. Davis-Bacon has been a critical component of federally funded transportation projects for decades, and promotes a fair labor market by upholding local wage standards. Vote NO on King #63.
- #60, Rohrabacher (CA) – This amendment could have negative effects on safety and efficiency standards by arbitrarily setting altitude standards for aircraft transitioning from oceanic to domestic airspace. The safe and efficient flow of air traffic should be the only factors determining altitude. Vote NO on Rohrabacher #60.
- #72, Fleishmann (TN) – This amendment would greatly reduce runway construction standards at many general aviation airports, and reduce the number of available options in the event of an emergency. Vote NO on Fleishmann #72.
- #46, Cohen (TN) – This amendment would allow third-party contractors to access private pilot information at any time without an individual’s consent, and with no limits on how this information can be used. This is an irresponsible breech of pilot privacy. Vote NO on Cohen #46.
Amendments we urge you to support:
- #58, Esty (CT) – This amendment will create the Women in Aviation advisory Board to promote organizations that provide training, outreach, mentorship, and recruitment of women in the aviation industry. Vote YES on Esty #58.
- #26, DeFazio (OR) – This amendment clarifies the requirements for the safe operation of small unmanned aircraft for hobbyist or recreational use. Vote YES on DeFazio #26.
- #42, DeFazio (OR) – This amendment ensures that the U.S. can enact regulations on the transportation of flammable lithium batteries in the absence of an accident. Vote YES on DeFazio #26.
- #69, Souzzi (NY) – This amendment requires a report on the safety of aging aircraft, including a review of maintenance work done by contract repair stations. Vote YES on Souzzi #69.
William Samuel, Director
GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS DEPARTMENT