This is news to us. The FAA, says an oft-quoted US airline analyst and consultant, is irrelevant. Not part of the solution, just not part of solving the delays dilemma. That at least is what Mike Boyd, the Colorado-based consultant and quipmeister who heads The Boyd Group, said. The other day, Boyd went on CNBC, a major US cable operation that serves financial types, to do a show about airport congestion; he ended up saying that the FAA just didn’t count. You can watch his comments here and see a less-quotable response from someone less-often quoted but possibly more familiar.
Meanwhile the airlines say the FAA may count but can’t, and have come out, through their trade group the Air Transport Association, against even the thought of congestion fees to let market forces to reduce delays. This is a concept that some thinkers have begun advocating recently, but the airlines have vowed to fight, right down to the last lobbyist.