May 17, 2016

Government Relations Update: Senate Passes FAA Reauthorization Legislation

By Lewis-Burke Associates LLC

On April 19, following several weeks of debate and a flurry of last-minute amendments, the Senate passed the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act of 2016 by an overwhelming majority (95–3). As reported in the HFES Bulletin update on April 7, the bill includes a provision that would codify a definition of human factors into law — an ongoing priority for HFES government relations.

The current FAA authorization expires on July 15, 2016. It is unclear whether the House will respond with its own version, after a failed attempt at a reauthorization bill earlier this year included a controversial provision privatizing the air traffic control system. If the House does not offer a version, it is likely the chamber will consider the Senate-passed bill. HFES will continue to work to ensure that the human factors definition and other HF-related provisions are adopted into the final agreement and are signed into law.

Lewis-Burke Associates LLC, a leading Washington, D.C.-based government relations and consulting firm, represents the public policy interests of scientific societies and institutions of higher education. Lewis-Burke's staff of about 20 government relations professionals work to promote the federal research and policy goals of HFES and the HF/E community.