Westerman Votes to Modernize Nation’s Aviation Sector; FAA Bill Includes Westerman Amendment
WASHINGTON – Congressman Bruce Westerman (AR-04) issued the following statement Friday upon passage of H.R. 4, the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018:
“This five-year reauthorization of the Federal Aviation Administration modernizes our nation’s skies by cutting red tape and encouraging improved productivity and innovation in aviation technology,” Westerman said. “The result will be a safer, better flying experience for the American public which will allow us to remain the world leader in aviation. With my colleagues on the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, we have not only crafted a bill that improves the nation’s skies, but also protects Americans from future disasters – both man-made and natural. The reforms to FEMA encourage preparation through strengthened building codes and hazard mitigation while at the same time allowing for quicker recovery through faster post-disaster inspections of structures. This bill is a victory for the American people and I was proud to support this important legislation.”
Westerman introduced an amendment to H.R. 4, along with Democratic Congressman Dan Lipinski of Illinois, which was approved by the House. In accordance with the Brooks Act, Amendment No. 6 would apply Qualifications-Based Selection (QBS) standards to any airport development project that uses federal grant funds for construction.
Amendment No. 6 clarifies existing rules to ensure that airports follow a uniform QBS process for procuring architecture, engineering and design services on airport projects that utilize Airport Improvement Program (AIP) funds. Originally codified in 1972 and subsequently applied to AIP funds in 1987, QBS is an open, competitive procurement process where firms first compete on the basis of qualifications, past experience, and the specific expertise they can bring to a project.
According to the American Council of Engineering Companies, Airport Consultants Council, and four other construction design organizations that endorsed this amendment, “The simple, straightforward provision will maximize quality, promote technical innovation, and safeguard taxpayer dollars on federally funded airport projects.”