House DOT Appropriations Bill Supports Barr Program
Yesterday NBAA welcomed language in a congressional appropriations bill that would preserve the Block Aircraft Registration Request (Barr) program. The FAA dismantled Barr, which allowed aircraft operators to block their aircraft tail numbers on online flight tracking sites, six weeks ago. Rep. Tom Latham (R-Iowa)–the chairman of the House subcommittee on transportation, housing and urban development and related agencies–included the Barr provision in the agencies’ annual appropriations bill. The bill states that none of the previous or future funding for the DOT “may be used to implement or to continue to implement any limitation on the ability of any owner or operator of a private aircraft to obtain, upon a request to the [FAA] Administrator, a blocking of that owner’s or operator’s aircraft registration number from any display of the [FAA’s] Aircraft Situational Display to Industry data that is made available to the public, except…to a government agency, for the noncommercial flights of that owner or operator.” Last month, Sen. Pat Roberts (R-Kan.) introduced a standalone bill to preserve Barr, and the House FAA reauthorization bill passed earlier this year included a similar provision. NBAA and AOPA are also challenging the elimination of Barr in court.