Privatizing ATC

This article talks about the possibility of privatizing ATC. I’m not for more government controls, but also not sure that ATC rules, regs, and controls should be outsourced to the lowest-bidder. This would also pose a huge threat to GA. There would be the potential for larger ‘voiced’ groups like major commercial carriers to influence routes and priorities. Not exactly sure what I think about this yet.

Anyone have any persuasive thoughts in one direction or another?


It’s not about leisure and living life anymore. It’s only about the money.


Sure seems that way. I’m all about people making a living. I would just hate to see undue limitations put on GAs. Privatizing would probably save money, but it could turn the skies over the US into a GIANT TS1 server! LOL.


Hahaha, yeah. For Nav Canada, isn’t there an ATC services fee for pilots? If ATC gets privatized, that will just be another fee (adding on to fuel, maintenance, purchases, etc) for private pilots.


That would be literal hell.


Honestly government control or not, I think there should be a fee for using services… right now you can use the NAS free of charge. What does this fee do? This fee pays for the upgrades that the NAS NEEDS that the government within the current budget cannot provide. We are still using NAVIADS from the 50’s-60’s.

Now, I know most people think this fee would be outrageous, but it doesn’t have to be, want to fly IFR, $10 fee. Maybe not even that much, but take that minor amount, multiplied by the number of flights per day… talk about massive improvements in no time.


I think ground-based aviation tech in general needs an overhaul, I’ve heard of airports that still use the pieces of paper method without state of the art radar.

There are countries that do, that’s for sure. I can’t remember the one I was talking to someone about a few days ago, but you go into their “radar” room and it’s a table with planes on it. They don’t have the money in their CAA so everything is done non radar.

As far as the states, no, every radar facility has scopes, ASR and so on.

Australia on the other hand has removed all their ground based and is 100% RNAV.


Hmmm im at a crossroad on this one. I all about less government control. Positive it creates a new industry that stimulates the economy. Would airport fees go up for airlines if the airport has to increase the cost to pay for atc. This could make it harder to fly GA and increase cost but aviation costs money in general. I cant make a decision since I dont have all the facts, pros, and cons.

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This is just another way for big corporations to make money off of regular citizens.

At my local airport which is GA only, they have been outsourcing the ATC since 1997. It works fine in my opinion. But the whole US system being outsourced probably wouldn’t go as smoothly as this did.


Oh dear…

NRP is a very reliable source, they are also covering this.

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I am a Republican but I don’t really like this idea. Pres. Trump says he wants low taxes, but doing this would increase taxes! Private ATC would mean that airport owners (companies, towns, cities, etc.) would have to pay the controllers. and they might not have the money so they have to resort to increasing taxes.


Town of Islip needs to pay controllers to control at Long Island MacArthur airport, which is owned by the town.
Town of Islip doesn’t have the necessary funds to pay them. Therefore in order to get the funds, everyone who lives in Islip has a tax increase.


I don’t see this having too much of an impact if they do it right. I’m just afraid they might rush it and improperly overhaul the entire NAS infrastructure.


They’ll be fine if they do what Canada with NAV Canada. We have a self-sustaining, non-profit ATC company that handles everything. It seems to work quite well.


You should ask for a tour and report back what type of equipment they have in the CT.

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I am looking to doing that one of these days. I went up there once a long time ago but I don’t remember too much of what it looked like. Little sidenote: I am also looking to tour CMH and LCK’s towers.

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Found this on the EAA website. Interesting read.

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Saw these a couple of weeks ago, Explains what is ATC Privatization is:

Source: AOPA

A voice against privatization:

Source: ATC not for Sale

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No no. What would this mean?? That normal people would run it like a business?

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