Aviation industry urges inclusion of the PARTT 147 Act in the Aircraft Certification Reform Act

The Aircraft Electronics Association recently joined more than 20 aviation groups urging congressional leaders to support the Promoting Aviation Regulations for Technical Training (PARTT) 147 Act (S.3043/H.R.5427). The bill would mandate Federal Aviation Administration regulatory reform of aviation technician education, empower innovative curriculum development, and reinforce a workforce pipeline that will be vital to a strong, post-pandemic recovery.

In part, the group’s letter to members of the U.S. House of Representatives stated, “The PARTT 147 Act is a bipartisan, bicameral bill introduced by Sen. James Inhofe, Sen. Tammy Duckworth, Rep. Don Young, and Rep. Cheri Bustos; it is co-sponsored by seven other senators and 16 representatives. The Act was included in the Senate Commerce Committee’s Aircraft Safety and Certification Reform Act of 2020 (S. 3969), but not in the House’s companion bill, the Aircraft Certification Reform and Accountability Act (H.R. 8408). The undersigned urge that the language be retained in the final legislation.

“The aviation industry relies heavily on its technical workforce. Aviation maintenance schools governed by Title 14 Code of Federal Regulations (CFR) Part 147 produce the vast majority of certificated mechanics. Efficient and effective Part 147 programs are therefore a vital piece of the industry’s technical personnel pipeline.

“FAA regulations mandate the subject areas aviation maintenance technician schools must teach to aspiring aviation maintenance mechanics. Unfortunately, those static curriculum requirements have not been significantly updated in more than five decades. The gross regulation-imposed hindrance wastes time, resources, and student tuition, and erodes the attractiveness of the profession.

“Seeing no regulatory relief in sight, the undersigned organizations acknowledge that this legislative ‘fix’ is intended to resolve the issue after decades of pushing for a new rule to modernize aviation maintenance technician training, ensure a performance-based approach to regulatory oversight, and provide flexibility for Part 147 schools to partner with high schools and employers.”

To read the letter in its entirety, click here.

Contact Ric Peri, AEA vice president of government and industry affairs, by email at ricp@aea.net or by phone at 202-589-1144.