ATA: ‘Lavish Jet Planes’ Are Clogging the Airways

 - May 27, 2008, 11:11 AM

In an e-mail sent by Air Transport Association (ATA) president and CEO James May to airline customers, the ATA cites the heavy influx of business jets to the Kentucky Derby on May 3 as an example of how “private jets clogged the airways” and “paid barely anything to use or modernize our nation’s air traffic control system.” Although May and the ATA offer no evidence that the jets flying to Kentucky caused any airline delays or that they didn’t pay to use the ATC system via fuel taxes, he suggested that as growing numbers of business jets enter service, they will “overwhelm the current system and cost airline passengers billions of dollars a year in delays.” NBAA president and CEO Ed Bolen noted that “delays are caused by the airlines over-scheduling flights 365 days a year at big-city airports all across the country.” He added, “It’s also disingenuous for the airlines to suggest that general aviation won’t contribute to aviation system modernization, when the GA community supports legislation that contains a 65-percent fuel tax increase on GA to help fund the FAA and transform the aviation system.”