The White House on Monday will formally endorse a plan to spin off more than 30,000 federal workers into a private nonprofit corporation, separating the nation’s air traffic controllers and those who work on a $36 billion modernization program from the Federal Aviation Administration.
The Trump administration proposal, which will be presented at the White House later Monday, essentially is an endorsement of a plan that failed to gain sufficient traction in Congress last year.
The plan, a copy of which was obtained by The Washington Post, is in keeping with the stated desire of the administration and congressional Republicans to streamline government and transfer some functions into private hands.
While the separation has been discussed for decades and was proposed under the Clinton administration, in its current iteration it has fractured the airline industry, divided the unions that represent the federal workers, raised the ire of private plane operators, been opposed by ranking House Democrats and raised eyebrows in the Senate.
The Trump administration endorsement, first signaled in a preliminary budget released in March, could provide the momentum needed to get the proposal through both houses and to the president’s desk for his signature.