March 21, 2023

Ahead of the FAA Reauthorization, Duckworth Meets with TSA Administrator on Aviation Priorities


[WASHINGTON, D.C.] – U.S. Senator Tammy Duckworth (D-IL), Chair of the U.S. Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Aviation Safety, Operations and Innovation today met with Transportation Security Administrator (TSA) David Pekoske to discuss their legislative priorities ahead of this fiscal year’s Federal Aviation Administration’s (FAA) reauthorization. Specifically, Duckworth highlighted some of her top priorities for the reauthorization, including safety, workforce development and improving travel for passengers with disabilities.

“I’m glad I was able to meet with Administrator Pekoske today to discuss our aviation priorities,” Duckworth said. “As the Chair of the Senate Commerce Subcommittee on Aviation Safety, Operations and Innovation, I’m looking forward to continuing to work with him as we negotiate FAA Reauthorization and ensure we’re focusing on promoting safety, improving the travel experience for Americans with disabilities, bolstering the aviation workforce and more.”

Last week, Duckworth chaired a U.S. Senate Commerce Committee hearing to examine the challenges facing the aviation workforce and identify solutions for improving the recruitment and retainment of workers in the aviation industry. During her remarks, she touted bipartisan efforts to increase investments in grants that would support the workforce, including legislation like her bipartisan Aviation Workforce Development Enhancement Act.

Last year, Duckworth introduced bipartisan legislation to help meet future needs in our aviation workforce in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. The Aviation Workforce Development Enhancement Act would help expand the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA)’s current Aviation Workforce Development Grant program by increasing annual funding for pilot development and mechanic development grants, as well as provide grant funding for aviation manufacturing workforce development.

As a result of legislation that was written by Duckworth, the Department of Transportation implemented a new rule requiring air carriers to disclose for the first time how many checked bags, wheelchairs and motorized scooters they damage or mishandle each month.