The chairman of the U.S. House of Representatives’ transportation committee has expressed concerns to the Department of Transportation’s inspector general about air traffic controller productivity. Since 2000, the number of air traffic controllers has increased slightly, while the number of air traffic operations has declined by 23 percent. The House committee wants the IG to study productivity during a period of reduced air traffic. It has also demanded a further probe into the FAA’s plans to enhance controller productivity, including the factors that need to be addressed to achieve the expected benefits and the estimated cost savings that could be achieved with improved controller productivity. The IG’s office responded that, “knowledge of which air traffic control facilities operate relatively more efficiently would help identify the factors necessary to achieve greater productivity.” The IG said that it expects to begin the audit in the next few weeks by assessing the relative efficiency of ATC towers. More information is available from program director Betty Krier at 1 (202) 366-1422.