Trump & Airline Execs to Hold Critical Meeting Today

President Trump, in his continuing effort to jump-start America’s economy, is meeting with airline industry leaders to discuss the industry’s future in the United States.

On Thursday, Trump will meet with several airline CEOs in an effort to not only create more jobs and economic growth in the industry, but to ensure that all Americans are guaranteed the safe air travel they currently enjoy through future modernization and efficiency.

CEOs attending today’s meeting include Delta Air Lines’ head, Edward Bastian, and United Airlines’ boss, Oscar Munoz. Representatives from JetBlue also plan to participate in the event.

According to The Hill, the FAA needs to be re-authorized as a federal agency in September of this year.

UPDATE:  Video of President Trump’s meeting with airline CEOs below:

One of the main topics to be discussed is whether to reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) as a federal agency or go with a proposal by House Transportation Chairman Bill Shuster (R-Pa.), backed by some of the nation’s major airlines, which has pushed for a separate air traffic control (ATC), independent of the federal government.

A new poll to be released later on Thursday reveals deep skepticism among the public for handing ATC over to a non-profit organization.

The telephone survey, conducted by Global Strategy Group on behalf of the Alliance for Aviation Across America, shows that 88 percent of respondents rated the FAA’s current ATC operations as positive. The poll also found that while 43 percent of people support the general idea of privatizing government functions, just 26 percent of people supported doing so for air traffic control.

There are politicians who want the FAA to remain under the control of the federal government, whereas those who are in favor of the separation say that, although it would be handed off to a non-profit, it would still fall under the FAA’s control.

President Trump has not yet broached the FAA topic but there appears to be both pros and cons attached to it.

The meeting will also, undoubtedly, address the safety and modernization concerns which Trump touted during his campaign when he called America’s airports “third world airports.”

The FAA has been in the process of trying to get its NextGen modernization program up and running, which would greatly enhance the tracking abilities of the FAA through a satellite-based system.

Finally, the issue involving the Obama administration’s signing off on European-based airline company Norwegian Air coming into the U.S. has many in the industry angered.

Unions are presently suing over permit approval and would like to see Trump overturn Obama’s decision, citing that it “undercuts U.S. competition and violates the international Open Skies agreement.”

H/T: The Hill

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