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In response to a congressional request, GAO evaluated the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) National Airspace System (NAS) Plan to determine: (1) the additional resources that modernization would require before realizing its benefits; (2) the causes and effects of development delays that the most costly and complex NAS Plan projects have experienced; and (3) FAA weaknesses in managing the plan.

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Recommendations for Executive Action

Agency Affected Recommendation Status
Department of Transportation 1. The Secretary of Transportation should direct the Administrator, FAA, to revise the ATC modernization plan by: (1) identifying all needed projects and their associated benefits, costs, and schedules so that relative priorities can be set on the basis of benefit-cost ratios, mission need, or safety considerations; and (2) reflecting in project schedules and quantity requirements the results of other agencywide plans for airspace changes, airport development, and human resource management.
Closed - Implemented
FAA issued the Capital Investment Plan (CIP) in December 1990. CIP is partially responsive to the recommendation, since it identifies all modernization projects. However, as noted in RCED-91-132FS, FAA does not include the project benefits and costs in CIP, although it makes such data available to Congress and GAO. The recommendation should be closed because FAA and GAO will be unable to agree.

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