January 2003

GREETINGS! First, Here's an update from Washington, D.C. The FAA announced last Monday, January 6, 2003, its next step in modernizing the nation's Air Traffic Control System through a contract awarded to General Dynamics Decision Systems (GDDS) for the purchase of up to 20,000 CM-300 series air traffic control radios over the next 10 years. The FAA will use the new radios to communicate from en route air traffic control centers to aircraft flying at cruising altitude as part of a modernized communications system for the National Airspace System. John Cole, a Vice President and General Manager with GDDS, said the FAA can "install the CM-300 and leave it running continuously for well beyond 10 years before failure". In comparison to existing radios, the new CM-300 radios use the radio spectrum more efficiently and provide protection from interference from other radios nearby. The minimum quantity under the contract is 1000 radios, valued at $5.8 million; however, the deal has a potential value of up to $119 million.

Secondly, Having updated equipment is great, but without happy controllers, things could still get behind the power curve. Toward that end, the FAA and the National Air Traffic Controllers Association (NATCA) have reached a tentative deal on a two-year extension of NATCA's current agreement with the agency. Signed in 1998 and set to expire in September through September of 2005. "With the enormous amount of work we are doing with the FAA on a wide array of subjects, from modernizing the National Airspace System, to redesigning the airspace to enhancing the safety of air travel in the skies and on the runways and taxiways, it was vitally important to us to resolve the issue of our collective bargaining agreement as efficiently as possible, "NATCA President John Carr said, "Staffing is one of our most pressing concerns," he added. "Not only do we need more controllers, we need to hire replacements for the 5,000 controllers the GAO (General Accounting Office) says will be eligible to retire within the next five years."

Thirdly, Former Senate Majority leader Trent Lott (R-Miss.) not Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (R-Texas) may be the new self-appointed front-runner for Chairman of the Senate Aviation Subcommittee, according to a January 8th report in Aviation Daily. Lott, credited by some for passing the Airport Security Bill, is expected to focus on reforming small-community air service and the economic viability of small airports. He was apparently able to use his seniority to make the move. The trickle-down may land Hutchison as Chair of the Surface Transportation Subcommittee. Hutchison's previously stated platform made cargo security a priority. Lott is expected to assume the role in addition to his Chair of the full Senate Rules Committee.

Fourthly, Here's an update Concerning Missouri Legislation. The Missouri State Senate newly Elected Senators were sworn in and took office this past Wednesday January 8th, 2003. There were 12 Newly Elected Senators for the 92ND General Assembly. This included 9 Republicans and 3 Democrats. To view these pages just go to:

Fifthly, The Missouri House of Representatives Newly Elected was sworn in and took office Wednesday, January 8TH, 2003. For the Member Roster just go to:

Sixthly, The Missouri House of Representatives, 2003 Session, 92ND General Assembly, First Regular Session. Here are some Dates of Interest:

Jan 8TH: General Assembly Convenes (12:00 Noon)

Jan 15TH: Joint Session, State of State and Budget Address (10:30 A.M.)

Jan 22ND: Joint Session, State of Judiciary Address (10:30 A.M.)

To view all these Dates of Interests go to:

Now, In Conclusion, Remember We as USPA, MPA, EAA, AOPA, or any other State Pilot Association Groups, has a powerful voice in Missouri, and Washington, D.C. So Let's exercise that privilege and continue to make a "Difference for General Aviation."

Until Next Time!

Larry G. Harmon
Legislation Chairman
E-mail address:

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