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National Office Week in Review: Dec. 9, 2015

A publication of the National Air Traffic Controllers Association

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BRIEFINGS On December 8, 2015 , NATCA requested an informational briefing on AIR Transformation. We are currently waiting f or a response from th e Agency regarding our request. NATCA POCs: Labor Relations Attorney Damien Maree and Labor Relations Coordinator Kendal Manson . On December 1, 2015 , NATCA requested a briefing on Tower Data Link Services (TDLS2) Software Release 12.0. We are currently in the proce ss of scheduling this briefing. NATCA POCs: Labor Relations Representative Melinda Kim and Labor Rela tions Coordinator Kendal Manson. On December 1, 2015 , NATCA requested a briefing on the Deployment of the Airports (ARP) Elec tronic Docu ment Management System (eDMS). We are currently waiting for a response from th e Agency regarding our request. NATCA POCs: Labor Relations Representative Melinda Kim, Labor Relations Attorney Suzanne DeFelice, and Labor Rela tions Coordinator Kend al Manson. GOVERNMENT AFFAIRS DEPARTMENT CONGRESSIONAL SCHEDULE : The House and Senate were both in session during the week of November 30. Both chambers are scheduled to be in session until December 18 before recessing for the holidays and concluding th e 2015 session of Congress. The clock is ticking as negotiators work toward the December 11 deadline to provide government funding. NATCA DISCUSSES AIR TRAFFIC CONTROLLER SHORTAGE AT CONGRESSIONAL ROUNDTABLE : On Dec. 8, NATCA President Paul Rinaldi and Ex ecutive Vice President Trish Gilbert discussed issues surrounding the nation's air traffic controller staffing shortage at a roundtable policy discussion on FAA's air traffic controller hiring, stiffing and training plans, held by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. The roundtable was seen as a direct result of NATCA's call for a hearing to push the FAA to evaluate the issues surrounding the staffing crisis. The roundtable addressed hiring, placement, and training of air traffic controlle rs. NATCA believes that these three issues are bound and the FAA must take a holistic approach to improve the entire staffing problem. Staffing background: New data show that national staffing totals have fallen nearly 10 percent since 2011. Official FAA data shows the agency will miss its air traffic controller hiring goal for fiscal year 2015. This will be the fifth consecutive fiscal year in which the FAA has not hired enough air traffic controllers to keep up with the pace of workforce attrition. As of August 22, 2015, the FAA had only hired 1,178 of a planned 1,772 air traffic controllers, putting the agency 34 percent behind its goal. Of the 10,859 certified controllers, 30 percent are eligible to retire at any time. For more information about the sta ffing crisis and our request to Congress, please click here . COUNTDOWN TO FRIDAY, DECEMBER 11 : Government funding provided through the temporary Continuing Resolution (CR) ex pires on December 11. A failure to reach a deal by Friday on a $1.1 trillion package to fund the government would require some sort of stopgap measure in order to avoid a shutdown. House Majority Leader Kevin McCarthy on Tuesday, December 8 that the House will pass a short - term CR to fund the government beyond Friday the 11th. Leadership in the House hopes that this will give

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