Brothers and Sisters,
As our members and our National Airspace System (NAS) are still feeling the effects of the recent 3-day federal government-wide shutdown, we are now on the brink of a second shutdown in less than a month. The current 17-day continuing resolution (CR) expires on Thursday, Feb. 8, 2018. It is the fourth consecutive CR since September 2017. If Congress cannot reach an agreement on a government funding bill before 12:01 a.m. EST, Friday, Feb. 9, the CR will expire and the government will shut down again.
As we approach another funding deadline, we will continue to monitor this situation and track all possible outcomes. In the event of a shutdown, employees who continue to work will not be paid until the government is funded, while certain FAA employees would be furloughed and may not be paid at all.
It is unfortunate that our broken political system and government funding process have us bracing for yet another shutdown. The NAS requires a stable, predictable funding stream in order to adequately support: air traffic control services, staffing, hiring and training, long-term modernization projects, preventative maintenance, ongoing modernization to the physical infrastructure, and the timely implementation of NextGen modernization projects. These stop-and-go funding crises slow the hiring and training process for air traffic controllers and perpetuate the current staffing crisis, which has resulted in a 29-year low of certified professional controllers.      
In the event that Congress does not pass a funding bill before Feb. 9, NATCA has negotiated a procedural Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) with the FAA to accompany the existing Furlough MOU and Questions & Answers that appear in Appendix P-4 of the Slate Book. The Appendix P-4 MOU applies to all NATCA bargaining unit employees in the FAA regardless of contract. NATCA also has worked with the FAA in recent months to ensure that the Agency's list of "excepted employees" who would not be subject to furlough is as accurate as possible. You can find all of these materials as well as answers to frequently asked shutdown-related questions on our website at If you have a question, please send it to
We will update you as new information becomes available.
In Solidarity,
Paul Rinaldi, NATCA President
Trish Gilbert, NATCA Executive Vice President

NATCA Boots on the Ground Program 
Accepting Applications

Last year, noted labor activist Mike Ingrao (right in top photo) passed the baton to NATCA's Tom Thompson (left) to run the NATCA Boots on the Ground Program.  The program allows mostly retired NATCA members to participate in the labor-to-labor outreach and education program of the AFL-CIO. 

With the 2018 election season right around the corner,  NATCA  will again be actively participating in the process. One of  NATCA's  best political programs since its inception in 2008, Boots on the Ground  has proven very effective at getting the word out to the Labor community on the records and positions of candidates running for office.

We are now soliciting volunteers who wish to participate in this program full time, beginning late spring/early summer later this year. This link explains the program in greater depth and should answer some of the 

preliminary questions you may have. At this point, we aren't sure how many people we will be putting into the program or into what states they may be going. There are a lot of variables that go into those decisions and this solicitation is just the beginning of the process. 

If you are interested in participating in the Boots program, please click on the link and fill out the application. Any questions about the program can be directed to National Legislative Committee Chair Steve Weidner at, 612-532-2675, or Thompson at 317-331-34233.

The application process will close Friday, March 2.  All applicants can expect to receive an email notification concerning the result of their application prior to May 31, 2018. Due to the numerous considerations associated with selecting our locations each cycle, these will not be finalized until notifications are sent out.

The Boots program is a rigorous but highly rewarding experience, benefiting  NATCA  and organized labor. If this sounds like something that interests you, don't hesitate to apply. Thank you for your consideration.

In Solidarity,

Steve  Weidner , Chair
NATCA  National Legislative Committee

International Transport Workers' Federation 
Air Traffic Services 

Last month (Jan. 15-18) we attended the annual International Transport Workers' Federation ( ITF) Air Traffic Services Committee meeting followed by a three-day conference at ITF House in London.
The committee meeting consisted of briefings on disruptive technologies, such as drones and remote tower technology, fatigue mitigation, and work rules/hours.
The conference was on the Commercialization & Privatization of Air Traffic Control. It focused on the principles, effects, and perspectives of reform on aviation systems around the world.
The conference began with remarks from International Civil Aviation Organization (ICAO) Deputy Regional Director, George Firican from the European and North Atlantic Office in Paris.  
Trish, who is the Vice Chair of the ITF Air Traffic Services Committee, moderated the first panel with two employer panelists from UK air navigation service providers (NATS and Air Navigation Solutions) and two from the UK labor union representing air traffic controllers and engineers (Prospect ATCOs branch). The panelists covered the challenges and benefits with the many air traffic controller/technicians/engineering employers and their liberalized ATC tower market in the UK.  
Paul was a panelist on the next panel with NAVCANADA, Presidents from Canada's air traffic controller labor union (CATCA) and Professional Aviation Safety Specialists (PASS).  CATCA offered their unique perspective on the positives they have seen since leaving government while also sharing the somewhat tumultuous labor/management relationship they dealt with in the early years of their transition. PASS and NATCA shared the different strategies each union has taken as reform legislation was drafted and introduced the last two sessions of Congress. NATCA shared that many pieces of legislation affect our membership so being involved in drafting any proposals to protect them, which also gives us influence on killing harmful anti-union or anti-federal employee attempts, is the best path. Both unions did share how problematic status quo has become to properly fund the U.S. system.   

Labor unions from France, Spain and Italy were on the next panel. French air traffic controllers are civil servants but have a mandatory budget fir their system so they are not subjected to political brinksmanship with funding or authorization. Spain has the most similar system as the U.S. in that its lower-activity towers are run by a for-profit air navigation service provider FerroNATS (subsidiary of NATS UK) and its busier towers and ACCs (enroute) are a government corporation. Italy just moved into a for-profit structure where the air navigation service provider is for-profit and now part of their stock exchange. The Italian unions representing air traffic controllers (four) fought the move into this structure, went on strike (more than once), but eventually lost their battle.
The next panel consisted of representatives from IFATCA, IFATSEA and ETF with similar viewpoints from the other panelists and attendees. There is universal concern with how reform can affect the livelihoods of the men and women aviation professionals globally.
Air traffic controllers, technicians, and engineers in attendance (in addition to those on panels) shared their perspective on their various models and the positives and negatives from their respective countries, including Argentina,  Austria,   Barbados, Belgium, Burkina Faso, Columbia, Cyprus, Denmark, Ethiopia, Greece, Indonesia,   Ireland, Kuwait, Mauritius, Mexico, Nigeria, Portugal, Sweden, Thailand, and Zambia.

Civil Air Navigation  Service Organization (CANSO) and two viewpoints from Academia (research) also shared their thoughts on the subject and asked and answered questions of attendees.
At the conclusion, it was evident that change was occurring in many countries and continues to be proposed in many others. Those that have seen structural change have varied reports on advantages vs. disadvantages. Those with a status quo that works well for the flying public, communities, and the workforce do exist.  


Volunteers Needed at EAA AirVenture Oshkosh 2018

The Experimental Aircraft Association's (EAA) AirVenture Oshkosh 2018 is just around the corner! This year's event is July 23-29. We will begin to set up our NATCA booth on July 19. There are multiple openings for volunteers to assist NATCA with this year's event. Below is a detailed description of what is expected:
- All bargaining unit volunteers are on their own time via annual leave, RDOs, etc.

- NATCA will provide lodging (shared house) and pay expenses for food. Due to the large number of volunteers, and limited bed space, no accommodations are available for any friends or family members of volunteers.

- Bargaining Unit Members are responsible for their transportation to and from the event.

- A minimum of three (3) days working at the event (July 22-29) is requested if at all possible.

- If volunteers are available for five (5) days during the event, that will help with the overlap but we understand five days may be too much to ask for during prime-time leave.

The dates listed above are more than just working in the NATCA booth. NATCA is looking for volunteers that would also assist in the following public venues:
Located at Pioneer Airport, KidVenture encourages children and teens to explore several areas of aviation, including flying, air traffic control simulation, and building aircraft, through hands on activities, speakers, simulators and demonstrations.
NATCA will assist the FAA with a NextGen display that explains to visitors the behind the scenes benefits of NextGen.
NATCA will have a presence in the Aviation Career tent, and our volunteers will be on hand to explain to visitors the career of air traffic control, and how to become an air traffic controller.

NATCA provides briefings and presentations several times throughout the event. These briefings are on subjects such as Pilot-Controller Communications, Aviation Weather, Emergencies, and other aviation subjects. Volunteers may be requested to assist or even lead these presentations.

If you have questions, please contact Kelly Richardson at

Volunteers must complete the Volunteer Information Form via the link below.

The deadline for volunteering is March 16.

Philadelphia locals look forward to welcoming NATCA brothers & sisters

Don't miss the chance to explore the perpendicular streets of the nation's birthplace & labor's heartbeat during the 17th Biennial Convention in Philadelphia, April 17-20. Important resources:

Hotel Information: Rooms are filling fast! Book ASAP!

Proposals have been mailed to all members. Click here for an electronic version. The National Convention body will vote on all proposals that are in order and properly before the body.  

If you have any questions please contact a  Constitution Committee member.  

Notice of Election & Election Rules for the 2018 NATCA National Election

A copy of the information below was mailed to every member's home address, in accordance with applicable law, during the first week of January 2018.

This is the Notice of Election and Election Rules for the election of the following officers of the National Air Traffic Controllers Association, AFL-CIO ("NATCA" or "Association"):
  • NATCA President
  • NATCA Executive Vice President
  • Regional Vice President, NATCA Alaskan Region
  • Regional Vice President, NATCA Central Region
  • Regional Vice President, NATCA Eastern Region
  • Regional Vice President, NATCA Great Lakes Region
  • Regional Vice President, NATCA New England Region
  • Regional Vice President, NATCA Northwest Mountain Region
  • Regional Vice President, NATCA Southern Region
  • Regional Vice President, NATCA Southwest Region
  • Regional Vice President, NATCA Western Pacific Region
  • Regional Vice President, NATCA Region X 
The election shall be referred to as the "2018 NATCA National Election." In accordance with Article VII of the NATCA National Constitution, the NATCA National Election Committee ("NEC") has established rules, contained herein, for the 2018 NATCA National Election.
Section 1 - General Provisions

A.    Elections shall be held by referendum and all balloting shall be conducted via secret ballot.

B.    Write-in votes shall not be permitted.  

C.    Members shall have the option of voting electronically or by mail, unless the NEC determines that electronic balloting shall not be used. 

D.    Electronic balloting, if available, shall be conducted via the Internet. Members shall be required to register online to vote electronically. The NEC shall provide all members with information on how to register for electronic balloting.

E.    With respect to mail-in ballots, the following procedures shall apply:

1.     The official number assigned to each member shall be printed on the face of the corresponding official ballot return envelope.

2.     A list of the names of all members, together with their corresponding official numbers, shall be made available the NEC for the purpose of checking the voting eligibility of the members whose ballots have been returned prior to the ballot count.

3.     Notwithstanding any provision to the contrary as set forth herein, all ballots shall be returned to a predetermined depository to ensure the secrecy of the ballots, and the ballots shall be held there until the time designated for the counting of such ballots.

F.     Except as otherwise specifically provided herein, any protest or challenge regarding the conduct of the 2018 NATCA National Election shall be made in accordance with Article VII of the NATCA National Constitution.

G.    Any further appeals must be filed with the Secretary of Labor, pursuant to 5 U.S.C. Section 7120 and applicable regulations.

H.    With respect to campaigning for office in the 2018 NATCA National Election, candidates shall comply with the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959 and any NATCA   rules. Candidates may not seek or accept endorsements from individuals or entities outside of NATCA.
Section 2 - Nominations

A.    All nominations shall be made in accordance with Article VII of the NATCA National Constitution.

B.    Nominations shall be in writing and delivered via UNITED STATES POSTAL SERVICE CERTIFIED MAIL to: National Election Committee c/o NATCA General Counsel, 1325 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20005. Nominations must be received at the Association Headquarters by 5:00 p.m. EDT on Friday, March 30, 2018.
C.    To be eligible for candidacy, nominees must have been active NATCA members in good standing for at least one year prior to the close of the nominations period (March 30, 2018).   
D.    The Association Headquarters shall be charged with the safekeeping of all nominations and shall turn them over to the NEC.

Section 3 - Nomination Acceptances

A.    Nominees shall not accept candidacy for more than one office.

B.    Nomination acceptances shall be in writing and contain the following information:    
1.     The candidate's full name and, if desired, any special name to appear on the ballot;
2.     The candidate's Facility, his/her home or mailing address, and the last four digits of his/her Social Security number;

3.     The title of the office for which the candidate is accepting nomination; and

4.     The following certification, completed, signed, and dated by the nominee:

                             "I hereby accept the nomination for the office of ______________. I certify that I am not now, nor have been for the past 13 years, convicted of or served any part of a prison term resulting from conviction of robbery, bribery, extortion, embezzlement, grand larceny, burglary, arson, violation of narcotics laws, murder, rape, assault with intent to kill, assault which inflicts grievous bodily injury, or violation of Title II or III of the Labor-Management Reporting and Disclosure Act of 1959, as amended, or conspiracy to commit any such crime."

C.    Nomination acceptances must be returned to the National Election Committee, c/o the NATCA General Counsel at the Association Headquarters, 1325 Massachusetts Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20005. Nomination acceptances must be received at the Association Headquarters by 5:00 p.m. EDT on Monday, April 30, 2018. Nomination acceptances not received by this time and date shall be declared invalid.    

D.    The NEC shall determine whether each candidate has correctly submitted his/her nomination acceptance and whether the candidate possesses the necessary qualifications for the proposed office. The NEC shall prepare a report listing each candidate and the office for which he/she has accepted nomination. Each candidate shall be marked "qualified" or "disqualified" on the report, based on the findings of the NEC. If a candidate has been deemed "disqualified," the reason for disqualification shall be stated in the report. The report shall be signed by all five (5) members of the NEC and submitted to the NATCA National Executive Board.

E.    The NEC shall notify any disqualified candidates, in writing and delivered by United States Postal Service certified mail, of the reason(s) for his/her disqualification. Disqualified candidates shall have the right to file a written appeal to the NATCA National Executive Board within ten (10) business days of the receipt of the disqualification notice. The NATCA National Executive Board shall review the appeal and issue a response within five (5) business days of receipt of the appeal.

F.     Once the nomination acceptance period has closed, a candidate may not withdraw from the race.

Section 4 - Balloting Procedures

A.    The NEC shall ensure the proper and timely preparation of ballots without partiality as to candidates. The names of the candidates for each separate office shall appear in alphabetical order based on the candidates' last names. Ballots shall contain voting instructions consistent with the provisions established herein.

B.    The ballots prepared at the direction of the NEC shall be the only official ballots. No other ballots may be used. The NEC shall maintain a record of the ballots distributed.

C.    Members shall return ballots via mail to a predetermined depository, which shall be paid for by NATCA, to ensure secrecy. No signature of the voter or other distinguishing mark may appear on the ballot. A signed or marked ballot shall automatically be ruled ineligible.

D.    To have his or her ballot counted, a member must be in good standing as of fifteen (15) days immediately preceding the close of the balloting.

E.    Ballots shall be distributed to the membership on Monday, June 25, 2018. Ballots must be completed electronically or, for mail-in ballots, received at the predetermined depository, by 11:59 p.m. EDT on Monday, July 30, 2018. Ballots not completed electronically or received in the depository by this time and date shall not be counted.

F.     Each member shall be entitled to a duplicate ballot and receive same, provided that he/she notifies the NEC by Monday, July 23, 2018. Envelopes used for duplicate ballots shall be marked "Duplicate Ballot" and shall be a different color than the envelopes used for the original ballots. Duplicate ballots shall be counted unless the original and duplicate ballot mailed to a member are both cast, in which case only the duplicate ballot shall be counted.

G.    If a member casts both an electronic ballot and a mail-in ballot, only the electronic ballot shall be counted.

H.    The NEC shall supervise the conduct of the election and take the measures it deems necessary to ensure a fair and impartial election.

Section 5 - Ballot Collection and Tally Procedures

A.    On the morning of Tuesday, July 31, 2018, a member of the NEC shall proceed to the depository and obtain all the ballots. Ballots shall be retained in the custody of the NEC until such time as they are checked and counted.

B.    The NEC shall tally all ballots and prepare a report detailing the results of the election, including a complete account of all ballots and a reconciliation of the ballots with rosters and verification lists of the membership. The report shall clearly detail any discrepancies discovered and include recommendations for the treatment of such discrepancies.

C.    The NEC shall commence the counting of the ballots on Tuesday, July 31, 2018 (the same day that the ballots are collected) and shall complete this work as quickly as possible. The report of the NEC shall be filed with the Association Headquarters no later than forty-eight (48) hours following the completion of the count.  

Section 6 - Runoff Procedures

A.    In the event of a runoff election, the NEC shall supervise the distribution of ballots. The ballots shall be distributed no later than sixteen (16) days after the NEC has ruled on challenges or protests of the election or, if there are no challenges or protests, within sixteen (16) days following the submission of the NEC's report.

B.    Any runoff elections shall be conducted in accordance with Section 4, herein. Ballots shall be distributed to the membership and shall be due back to the predetermined depository within thirty (30) days of the date of distribution. In the event that the thirty-day deadline falls on a weekend or holiday, the next regular business day shall be designated as the deadline for the receipt of returned ballots. The NEC shall meet the following day to tabulate ballots and announce the results of the runoff election.  

Section 7 - Installation of Officers

A.    New officers shall take office on September 1, 2018. In the event of a runoff election, such officers shall take office thirty (30) days after the results of the runoff election are finalized.

NATCA Academy - 2018 Schedule

Representative Training 1 (RT1)
March 5-9 Las Vegas
Representative Training 1 (RT1) April 9-13 Las Vegas
Representative Training 1 (RT1) Sept. 24-28 Las Vegas
Representative Training 1 (RT1) Dec. 3-7 Las Vegas
Federal Contract Tower (FCT) June 12-13 National HQ, D.C.
LEAP March 5-7 Glen Rose, Texas
Oct. 2018 (Dates TBA)
Airlie, Va.
Training Review Board (TRB) April 24-26 Las Vegas
Training Review Board (TRB) Sept. 11-13 Las Vegas
Legislative Activism (LAT) Feb. 21-22 Las Vegas
Legislative Activism (LAT) Sept. 11-12 Las Vegas
Adv. Legislative Activism (ALAT) Nov. 27-29 National HQ, D.C.
Secretary/Treasurer (STT) April 10-11 Las Vegas
Secretary/Treasurer (STT) Sept. 11-12 Las Vegas

NATCA Academy Legislative Class Change

An Advanced Legislative Activism Training (ALAT) class has been added to the NATCA Academy Legislative Class schedule in 2018. The Basic Legislative Activism Training (LAT) class originally scheduled for Nov. 28-29, 2018 in Las Vegas, has been replaced with an ALAT class on Nov. 27-29, 2018 in Washington, D.C. at the NATCA National Office.  

ALAT is an involved, 2 1/2-day course with guest speakers from the Office of Special Counsel, NATCA's Government Affairs Staff, and Special Counsel to NATCA's President. 

NATCA Academy Courses are available for sign up on the  NATCA Membership Portal (except for LEAP, which is by invitation only).
Once you have logged in, select "NATCA Academy" from the quick links. Then, select "2018 courses." If you need any help with registration, contact the Coordinator for your region. Registrants will be notified within 35 days from the course start date of their status for the course. 
If you have any questions, please contact NATCA's Training Coordinator, Carolyn Kamara, at
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