Air Traffic Control:

Challenges Facing FAA's Modernization Program

T-RCED-92-34: Published: Mar 3, 1992. Publicly Released: Mar 3, 1992.

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GAO discussed the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) Facilities and Equipment (F&E) reauthorization that will fund the Capital Investment Plan (CIP), the FAA air traffic control (ATC) modernization program. GAO noted that FAA: (1) faces persistent cost increases, schedule delays and performance problems in modernizing the ATC system; (2) initiated projects to sustain the ATC system due to delays in modernization which has contributed to the increase in the cost and size of CIP and has deferred benefits to system users; (3) began major acquisition reforms, since it did not recognize the complexity of ATC modernization and did not follow certain acquisition steps; (4) needs to follow through on the reforms; (5) did not create measurable goals to monitor CIP progress; and (6) is still formulating plans to consolidate ATC facilities and to accomplish key tasks to allow the use of satellites for ATC purposes, and until this is done it will not be clear what additional F&E funds will be needed over the next few years to accomplish those major changes.

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