AEA President Tells Congress: The Avionics Industry is Ready to Meet Mandate but FAA Leadership Needs to Refocus on ADS-B

Paula Derks Testifies before the U.S. House Committee on Small Business

WASHINGTON, D.C., June 11, 2014 -- Paula Derks, president of the Aircraft Electronics Association, told members of the U.S. House Small Business committee that FAA leadership needs to refocus its efforts for a more rapid adoption of the safety-enhancing NextGen technologies it has invested so heavily in.  

Chaired by Rep. Sam Graves (R-Mo.), the hearing titled, "FAA's 2020 NextGen Mandate: Benefits and Challenges for General Aviation." examined the benefits of the 2020 mandate to the general aviation industry, challenges it may face in compliance with the mandate and the importance of incentivizing and ensuring widespread adoption.

In her testimony, Derks focused on job-creation and urged congressional leaders to encourage the Federal Aviation Administration to expedite the implementation of the NextGen GA Fund by issuing loan guarantee certificates. Derks stressed the need to streamline certification and field approvals for the expected 160,000 U.S. general aviation airplanes to equip in time to meet the Jan. 1, 2020, mandate for ADS-B Out. 

Other witnesses who presented testimony include: Michael P. Huerta, FAA administrator; Tim Taylor, president and CEO of FreeFlight Systems; and Bob Hepp, owner of Aviation Adventures.

The hearing was live-streamed and is available on the committee's website. To watch, click here. (To hear Derks testimony, skip to 1:06:00 in the video)

To read Ms. Derks' full testimony click here.


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Founded in 1957, the Aircraft Electronics Association represents nearly 1,300 member companies in more than 40 countries, including approved maintenance organizations specializing in maintenance, repair and installation of aircraft electronics systems in general aviation aircraft. The AEA membership also includes manufacturers of aircraft electronics equipment, instrument repair facilities, instrument manufacturers, airframe manufacturers, test equipment manufacturers, major distributors, engineers and educational institutions.