DeCUBE#T REBSUE 00099 - [A1051832] Using Aviation Resources in the United States Bore Efficiently. LCD-76-445; B-164497(1). March 31, 1977. 65 pp. + appendices (28 pp.) . Report to the Congress; by BElmer B. Staats, Comptroller General. Issue Area: Facilities and Material Management (700). Contact: Logistics and Communications Div. Budget Function: National Defense: Department of Defense - Military (except procurement S contracts) (051). Organization Concerned: Department of Defense; Department of the Army; Department of the Navy; Federal Aviaticn Administration; Department of Camerce; Department of Transportation; Department of the Air Force. congressional Relevance: House Committee on Armed Services; Senate Committee on Armed Services; Congress. Authority: P.L. 87-843, sec. 304; ORB Circular A-62. Federal Aviation Administration Act of 1958. P.L. 85-726, sec. 803. There are 12,000 airfields in the United St tes, of which more than 4,000 serve the general public and the military community. To promote safety, manage airspace and resources, and provide the required logistics for these functions, the Federal Government has invested more than $1.6 billion tc support aviation. Findings/Conclusions: The Departments of Ccumerce, Defense, and Transportation provide overlapping services, including weather informadtion dissemination and airspace management, such of which could be more efficiently managed and coordinated. The military services and the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) unnecessarily operate radar approach control facilities independently in adjoining airspace sectors. All three departments operate duplicating weather fatrlities in some areas, which leads to excessive personnel requirements. FAA and the military developed navigational aids independently, and the military departments are maintaining rarely used navigational equipment. in addition, sole military airfields operate when air traffic is virtually nonexistent. Legislation delegated the principal responsibility for aviation functions and air safety to Transportation and Commerce, and permitted the necessary latitude for the Defense Department to fulfill its national defense responsibilities. Lack of coordination among the three departments has resulted in inefficient use of facilities and personnel. Recommendations: The departments involved should support a high level effort to develop ways in which aviation requirements can be planned and coordinated to assure economy and efficiency. Collectively, civilian and military aviation support functions should be reviewed; services that can be consolidated, eliminated, or curtailed should be identified; and similar services within the agencies and departments should be taken advantage of. (Author/SSj CD REPORT TO THE CONGRESS BY THE COMPTROLLER GENERAL ', . OF THE UNITED STATES Using Aviation Resources In The United States Mnore Efficiently There are 12,000 airfields in the United States and over 4,000 of these serve the general pubiic and military community. The Federal Government spends millions annually to pro- mote safety in the Nation's airspc-- A high concentration of feder3lly operated airfields in some parts of the country such as California, Hawaii, and Virginia offer excel- lent potential to consolidate and share func- tions and facilities, make better use of Federal support of aviation, and reduce cost:. L.D-76445 MARI, - 31, 1 9 77 COMPTROLLER GENERAL OF THE UNITED STATES WASHINGTON, UC.C. .0546 B-164497 ( 1 ) To the President of tne Senate and the Speaker of the House of Representatives The Federal Government spends millions of dollars annually to promote safe operation of aircraft in the Nation's airspace. This re'ort identifies opportunities available to Goverin.-ent agencies to consolidate and share functions and facilit.as and to reduce Government investment and expendi- tures for Federal support of aviati .. In view of the number of airfields in operation and the similarity in supporting activities, we reviewed selected civilian and military airfields to see if any effort is being made to avoid unnecessary duplication and to limit the Government's investment in aviation support. We made cur review pursuant to the Budget and Accounting Act, 1921 (31 U.S.C. 53), and the Accounting and Auditing Act of 1950 (31 U.S.C. 67). Copies of this report are being sent to the Director, Office of Management and Budget; the Secretary of Commerce; the Secretary of Defense; and the Secretary of Transportation. Comptroller General of the United States REPORT OF THE USING AVIATION RESOURCES COMPTROLLER GENER-T. IN THE UNITED STATES OF THE UNITED STATES MORE EFFICIENTLY DIGEST There are 12,000 airfields in the United States, of which over 4,000 serve the gen- eral public and the military community. Tc promote safety, manage airspace and resources, and provide the required logistics for these functions, the Federal Government has invested over $1.6 billion and spends about $865 mil- lion annually to support aviation in the United States. It makes its investment and carries out its support through the Departments of Commerce, Defense, and Transportation. The three departments provide overlapping services. For example, --Each is involved in disseminating weather information. -- Defense and Transportation, through its Federal Aviation Administration, are in- volved in airspace management requiring large investments in similar navigational aid equipment and personnel skills. In sum, American civilian and military activities--providing weather information facilities, flight planning and airspace management facilities, navigational aids, fire departments, maintenance facilities, ground support equipment, ground transporta- tion, food service, fuel, runways and ramps-- could be reduced or in some cases eliminated. The result would be more effective management and coordination of these activities. Specifically: --The military services and the Federal Avia- tion Administration are operating radar Ter Sheet. Upon removal, the report cover date should be noted hereon. LCD-7 approach control facilities independently in adjoining airspace sectors even though a single facility could manage the combined area. At Norfolk Regional Airport in Virginia, a Federal Aviation Administration- operated facility has the capability to cover the Norfolk area and reduce the need for the Navy ' facility 11 miles away at Oceana Naval Air Station. (See pp. 6 and 59.) -- Defense, Commerce, and the Federal Aviation Administration operate many weather facili- ties which, in many arceas, become duplicate support capabilities. (See p. 42.) -- In cent. al California the agencies are fore- casting weather, preparing flight briefings, and performing other tasks whicih overlap. Civilian and military personnel skills are extensive and can be merged in some areas. (See p. 43.) -- The Federal Aviation Administration and the military developed navigational aids in- dependently of each other (p. 27), and the military departments are maintaining rarely used navigational equipmernt (p. 36). Some military bases operate with as many as four navigational aid systems unnecessarily. (See p. 29.) -- Military airfields are operating and/or pro- viding support services when air traffic is virtually nonexistent. In the Norfolk area, military installations operate transient maintenance, ground controlled approach radar systems, and weather facilities 24 hours a day even though late night and early morning hours air traffic activity is low and services could be obtained from nearby commercial facilities. (See p. 58.) The Congress enacted laws placing overall man- agement responsibility for aviation functions and air safety under Transportation and Com- merce. These laws delegate this responsibil- ity to the military only where the military must support unique operational requirements. ii This permits the Secretary of Defense the necessary latitude to fulfill his national defense responsibilities. The absence of effective coordination between these departments is resulting in inefficient use of facilities and personnel which are a considerable drain on Federal resources. Existing procedures do not require that civil agencies and the military review aviation support functions on a collective basis. (See pp. 11 and 15.) GAO recommends that the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, the Secretary of Defense, and the Secretary of Commerce sup- port a high leve_-effoLt emphasizing the de- velopment of ways by which the three agencies can plan and coordinate aviation requirements to assure economy and efficiency and reduce cost. They should collectively -- review civilian and military aviation sup- port functions; -- identify services that can be consolidated, eliminated, or curtailed; and -- take advantage of similar services avail- able within or between the agencies and departments. (See pp. 20, 37, 52, and 62.) Defense and Transportation agree that in- creased planning and coordinating of avia- tion support functions is needed. (See pp. 66 and 88.) The Administrator, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, commenting for the Secretary of Commerce, was willing to work with Defense and Transportation to make weather services more economical and effi- cient. (See D. 89.) Defense and Transportation state that these problems can be dealt with effe tively t~hrough Tear Sheet i i i existing activities in the three departments. But it is Transportation's belief that since the Defense Department has long assumed the position that at many locations military pro- vision of aviation support is vital to defense needs, the Federal Aviation Administration should not question the validity of Defense's decisions. GAO believes that top-level managers in these agencies should reassess their aviation re- quirements and resources and study ways for further coordination and reliance on the capa- bilities available in both the civilian and military aviation communities. iv Contents DIGEST i CHAPTER 1 INTRODUCTION 1 Scope of review 2 2 MORE EFFICIENT USE OF THE NATION'S AIRFIELDS THROUGH BETTER MILITARY-CIVIL COOPERATION 4 The Government's investment in civilian and military airports is extensive 4 The military-civil relationship 5 Aviation resources can be shared 11 3 POTENTIAL FOR CONSOLIDATING APPROACH CONTROL FACILITIES 12 Control of aircraft in airspace 12 Consolidating approach control opera- tions can result in savings 17 Conclusion 20 Recommendation 20 Agency comments and our evaluation 21 4 DUPLICATE NAVIGATIONAL AID SYSTEMS ARE USED AT MILITARY AIRFIELDS 23 Categories and functions of navigational aids 23 Potential for standardization of civil and military equipments 27 Effective management of navigacional aids can reduce duplication 29 Conclusions 36 Recommendations 37 Agency comments and our evaluation 37 5 CONSOLIDATION OF AVIATION WEATHER FACILITIES IS FEASIBLE 40 Public laws provide for efficient Fed- eral weather support aviation 40 Duplication among neig, .ng weather stations 42 Integrating aviation weather support without harming defense preparedness 50 Conclusion 52 Recommendation 52 Agency comments and our evaluation 53 Page CHAPTER 6 POTENTIAL FOR CURTAILING MILITARY AIRFIELD OPERATIONS 55 Determining operation hours 55 Potential to reduce services 56 Installations having potential to reduce operations 58 Actions to reduce airport activities 61 Conclusion 61 Recommendation 62 Agency comments and our evaluation 62 7 THE NEED FOR EMPHASIS BY TrP-LEVEL MANAGERS 63 Recommendation 64 Agency comments and our evaluation 64 APPENDIX I Letter dated November 1, 1976, from Assist- ant Secretary of Defense (Installations and Logistics) with attachments 66 II Letter dated November 9, 1976, from Assist- ant Secretary for Administration, Depart- ment of Tran.portation with enclosures 86 III Letter dated September 15, 1976, from Admin- i.strator, National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administrations Department of Commerce 89 IV Principal officials responsible for adminis- tering activities discussed in this report 90 ABBREVIATIONS DOD Department of Defense FAA Federal Aviation Administration GAO General Accounting Office GCA ground controlled approach VHF very high frequency CHAPTER I INTRODUCTION Both the Federal Governmert and private citizens operate numerous airfields in the United States. These airfields use many support services to insure safe and economical flights and to protect the environment. Over 170,000 aircraft, rang- ing from small propelleL-driven craft to high performance military and commercial jetliners, operate in U.S. airspace. Supporting an aircraft from takeoff to landing requires a vast amount of information, service, and logistic support, such as communications, weather information, navigational support, maintenance, fueling services, personnel needs, and flight route information designed and controlled to insure safe departures and arrivals. The Federal Government plays a major role in operating the Nation's airways and airports. This is vitally important from a control and safety standpoint. The movement of 20,000 military, 2,600 commercial, and 150,000 private air- craft under uncontrolled conditions would be disastrous. Therefore, the Congress has authorized certain Federal agen- cies to establish rules, provide necessary service, and co- ordinate air requirements. The Federal AviaCion Administration (FAA) is responsible for safeguarding flying aircraft and does so through enroute air radar traffic control centers. FAA centers control air- craft flying under Instrument Flight Rules in assigned air- spaces. (An airspace is typically a circular area of about 25 nautical miles from an airfield up to an altitude cf about 12,000 feet.) However, controlling an aircraft as it ap- proaches an airfield can be the responsibility of FAA or the military services. While FAA is mandated to manage airspace, it can dele- gate control of air traffic in some areas to the military services. The Department of Defense (DOD), therefore, has considerable investment in airport operations in the United States. The Department of Commerce is responsible for providing U.S. weather information for safety of air operations. It provides weather forecast services and maintains a weather gathering network plus forecast offices. DOD also operates weather information systems throughout the world. 1 In view if the number of airfields in operation and the similarity ii supporting activities, we reviewed selected civilian and military airfields to see if any effort is being made to avoid unnecessary duplication and to limit the Gov- ernment's investment in aviation support. DOD policy encourages using other Federal agencies' support services when advantageous to the Government. 1/ This reduces unnecessary duplication of Government resources and helps the military services achieve economy and effective- ness by using interservice support. Several GAC reports 2/ have been issued addressing the opportunities to economize and maximize the use of existing Government facilities through consolidation and interservice agreements. GAO is now studying increased use of commercial air cargo facilities for moving military freight. In sur. ace transpor- tation, military freight has long moved by carrier personnel. The Department of Defense is phasing out its ocean terminals for military ocean freight and relying increasingly on com- mercial facilities; and under the provision of Office of Man- agement and Budget Circular A-76, support services are in- creasingly being contracted to the commercial sector. SCOPE OF REVIEW We reviewed public laws and FAA, DOD, Army, Navy, and Air Force regulations, procedures, and documents concerning airport support services. We discussed requirements and capabilities with Government officials at the various agency headquarters and installations. 1/Prescribed in DOD Directive 4000.19, entitled "Basic Poli- cies and Principles for Iintereervice, Interdepartmental and Interagency Support." 2/"Potential for Greater Consolidation of the Maintenance Workload in the Military Services" (July 6, 1973, B-178736). "Opportunities to Consolidate Support Functions in the Pacific to Reduce Military Cost" (May 11, 1972, B-160683). "Productivity of Military Below-Depot Maintenance--Repair Less Complex Than Provided at Depots--Can Be Improved" (Aug. 28, 1975, LCD-75-422). 2 The principal installations visited were: Oceana Naval Air Station, Virginia. Norfolk Naval Air Station, Virginia. Moffett Field Naval Air Station, California. Lemoore Naval Air Station, California. McClellan Air Force Base, California. Mather Air Forcet Base, California. Langley Air Force Base, Virginia. Fort Eustis, Virginia. FAA regional office, Los Angeles, California. Hickam Air Force Base, Hawaii. Wheeler Army Activity, Wheeler Air Force Base, Hawaii. Naval Air Station, Barbers Point, Hawaii. Marine Corps Air Station, Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii. Norfolk Regional Airport, Virginia. Patrick Henry Airport, Virginia. Sacramento Metropolitan Airport, California. Sacramento Executive Airport, California. Honolulu International Airport, Hawaii. Alameda Naval Air Station, California. Caatle Air Force Base, California. Fort Ord, California. San Francisco International Airport, California. Metropolitan Oakland International Airport, California. Weather Service Forecast Office, California. Flight Service Station, Oakland, California. Flight Service Station, Sacramento, California. Flight Service Station, Virginia. Flight Service Station, Hawaii. 3 CHAPTER 2 MORE EFFICIENT USE OF THE NATION'S AIRFIELDS THROUGH BETTER MILITARY-CIVIL COOPERATION Over 12,000 airports are operating in the United States. Many of these airports are small landing strips used only by the general aviation community for landings, takeoffs, and limited service to private (business and pleasure) air traffic. However, about 4,000 airports serve the needs of the general public and the military services. The Government has invested almost $1.7 billion in facilities to support domestic air traffic control and aircraft weather require- ments, and it spends millions of dollars a year to operate and maintain these facilities. THE GOVERNMENT'S INVESTMENT IN CIVILIAN AND MILITARY AIRPORTS IS EXTENSIVE Airport operation requires a considerable investment be- cause of the numerous services necessary, such as weather infor- mation facilities, flight planning and airspace managemer.t fa- cilities, air traffic control, navigational aids, fire depart- ments, maintenance, ground support equipment, ground transpor- tation, food, fuel, runways, and ramps. The support require- ments of an operational airport are shown graphically below. AIRPORT SUPPORT SERVICES Sg f tvi~ RTcnNllwtio Air4artrutrr S Wt L \ / CJ Run tway: Raw v: Vek ~:_m' * Ironi Aiehrc nm_ ' Avk ia Commeedmmlem Pr/tmtrV Bcmup 4 The Government's investment to support air traffic control and weather operations and its annual operating budget for this investment are shown below: Estimated Estimated operating value budget of capital Fiscal Fiscal equipment year 75 year 76 (millions) - Air Force $ 187.7 $141.9 $145.1 Navy/Marine 112.3 41.8 41.8 Army 40.0 15.9 27.9 FAA 1,353.0 591.2 650.2 Total $1,693.0 $790.8 $865.0 THE MILI"ARY-CIVIL RELATIONSHIP To promote economy and efficiency, the Congress enacted laws which placed overall management responsibility for avia- tion functions under the Departments of Transportation and Commerce. This responsibility can be delegated to the mili- tary in cases where it must support unique operational re- quirements. This gives the Secretary of Defense the necessary latitude to fulfill his national defense responsibilities. Our study suggests that military assumption of respon- sibility for aviation support has in many cases gone beyond unique requirements to the point of virtual self-sufficiency of military airports. Operating under a self-sufficient concept, military airports require resources to meet the needs of all likely users under all possible contingencies, thus we have such duplicating services: -- Weather stations, even though civilian weather agencies or other nearby military activities can often provide required information. -- Infrequently used approach and landing navigational aids and backup systems, although neighboring civil or military airports could provide an alternate or backup capability. -- Around-the-clock operations, even though neighboring airports are always open and could handle all flying activity during certain periods. 5 Coordinating requirements between military and civilian departments having air management responsibil.ty has been primarily a matter of resolving conflicts between aviation support facilities. As long as military support services do not interfere with the civil Algencies' management of their aviation support activities, the military seems to move for full control of its airfields and services. In the Norfolk area, for e.ample, the military and FAA operate approach control facilities. The FAA facility, located at the Norfolk Regional Airport, provides approach control services for the Norfolk Regional Airport, Langley Air Force Base, Norfolk Naval Air Station, Felker Army Air- field, Fort Eustis, and Patrick Henry Airport. These airports are located within 30 miles of the FAA facility. The Navy, however, operates its own approach control facility at the Oceana Naval Air Station to serve only the Oceana area. Since it is only 11 miles away, the Oceana facility could be served by the FAA facility. (See p. 59.) A similar situation exists in California where an FAA- operated approach contrJl facility at McClellan Air Force Base and an Air Force facility at Travis Air Force Base manage ad- jacent airspace. According to FAA officials, the airspace of both facilities could be managed by its McClellan facility at substantial savings. (See p. 18.) However, the Air Force has been reluctant to rely on FAA support at Travis and nothing has been done to implement such an economy measure. DOD policy encourages interagency cooperation DOD policy Directive 4000.19, entitled "Basic Policies and Principles for Interservice, Interdepartmental and Inter- agency Support," provides guidance for the se::vices to achieve efficiency and economies through interservice and interagency support arrangements. The Secretary of Defense in his annual report for fiscal year 1975 stated that: "The notion that each of the services should be independent of the others so that it doesn't have to rely, as it were, on external sources of sup- port is outdated. We can no longer afford it. We have to now think in terms of Total Force structure as opposed to separate interests." 6 Also in his fiscal year 1976 report, the Secretary pointed out that applying the principle of mutual support and force interdependence is completely feasible and desir- able. Although the Secretary was addressing air defense forces, the principle of interdependence is applicable to a wide range of support requirements and capabilities. Military officials justify self-sufficiency for each military airfield because of requirements, such as providing a trained force to meet wartime contingencies, stateside assignments for personnel rotatinj from overseas, and sup- port to meet unique military requirements. The basic question, therefore, is what constitutes uni- que military operational requirements. It must be remembered that the civil logistics base of the country, including air terminals and ocean terminals and their accessories, is a po- tentially powerful military resource. Therefore, the broads problem is to maximize the use or potential use of this re- source for military support. To the extent the civil infra- structure necessary to the Nation in peacetime can be used for military support, the less military support will be required and more military resources will be released for direct combat uses. As pointed out in chapter 1, there is a gradual shift by the military to greater use of civil resources for support activities. The following chapters discuss in detail some of tie areas that we feel could be consolidated. Duplications identified during this review (as listed on p. 8) pertain to: --Management of airspace used for aircraft approaches and departures. -- Multiple navigational aid systems that assist pilots to locate airfields and land aircraft. -- The development and dissemination of weather informa- tion to flyers by local weather stations. -- Military around-the-clock support at airfields located near other civilian or military airfields during periods of reduced activity. 7 EFFECTIVE USE OF AVIATION RESOURCES Report Annual Types of activities reference (000 omitted) 1. Curtailing night operations: Naval Air Station, Norfolk p. 60 $ 40 Langley Air Force Base p. 58 70 2. Consolidating approach control activities: McClellan/Travis Air Force Base p. 19 450 Naval Air Station Lemoore/ FAA Fresno/Castle Air Force Base p. 19 338 Marine Corps Air Station Kaneohe Bay Oahu Island p. 20 3,600 FAA Air Route Traffic Con- trol Facility/Honolulu Approach Control Center p. 20 1,500 3. Coordination requirements for navigational aid equipment: Mather Air Force Base p. 31 650 4. Potential elimination of non- essential NAVAIDS: VHF Omnidirectional Range (VOR) p. 36 1,600 Nondirectional Beacons (NDB? p. 36 135 5. Coordinating military and civilian weather require- ments: Sacramento Area p. 45 600 Hawaii p. 47/48 632 8 NiKRFOLK, VIRGINIA AREA AIRPORTS * MAJOR CIVILIAN AIRPORTS O AIR FORCE BASES O ARMY AIRFIELD INSTALLATIONS * NAVY AND MARINE CORPS AIRFIELDS FELKER ARMY AIRFIELD PATRICK HENRY AIRPORT , /- -JF"E ~-- LANGLEY AIR FORCE BASE " -**AMPON V NAVAL AIR S)'ATION NORFOLX OROL REGIONAL AIRPOR ~ v .NORFQLK V NAVAL AIR STATION o / wS are OCEANA o VIRGINIA BEACH VA SUFOLK VA CHESAPEAKE VA CALIFORNIA AIRPORTS * MAJOR CIVILIAN AIRPORTS * NAVY AND MARINE CORPS AIRFIELDS O ARMY AIRFIELD INSTALLATIONS O AIR FORCE BASES I CIVILIAN AIRFIELDS WHERE AIR NATIONAL GUARD FLYING APRC AYT A ACTIVIT!ES ARE BASED. IAIRPORTS HAVING AN INSTRUMENT LANDING SYSTEM ON AT LEAST ONI RUNWAY DIRECTION (EXCEPT WHERE AIR HATIONAL GUARD UNITS ARE LOCATED) AREAIIREVIEWED MY GAO rALE APB SACRAMENTO METROPOLITAN "CLrLLAN APB - - SAC*AMENTO EXECUTIVE AIRPORT HAMILON A' ALAMt£DA NA_>ii:; 4 sL:0;0 .f $ \ ' ~ OAKLAND -TOC'T~.. CROWS LANDING AUXILIARY SAN' FRANC IOLA'NDING FIELD (NAVY) MOFFERTT FELD NAI - FORT OR MONTERE YI , LYWODSUE ANK OREA 1 J ONA R SANT A MARIAR A. LITNA LAKE NAVAL AIR FAClA LIT VANONAEPUO IIA LANDIN m [RY A ISANTA BAARD C _q11,s A CAtPMUCLUTN PALMDALE A PLANTA HOLwLYWOODAOUXLAN; ANORTON AND N LOS A L ONTARIO* *ANTA ANA MRAINE CORR R | 'rtP*All'rloA O _ IEL TORO MAIlNE COPS AIR ITATION' iA eLdNTtL"I-SLAND NAVL- AUXILIARY LANDING CFIrLD CANMP PENDLETON MARINE COR AMAR SNAl AUXtLIARfV LANDING WORLD TH ILANtD NAS UIMPER IA ACHRYL LAND. -' I L CENTROA NAVAL AUXILIARY LANDING FIELDO NAVAL AIR FACILITY 10 AVIATION RESOURCES CAN BE SHARED Because many services at military and civilian airfields are similar, the greater the concentration of airfields in one vicinity, the greater the potential for sharing resources. The concentration of airports in two geographical areas is illustrated by the maps on pages 9 and 10. Some aviation services are already controlled by a single agency; for ex- ample, the responsibility for enroute navigational aid systems belongs to FAA for both the civilian and military communities. On the other hand, radar approach control, which must be pro- vided to safely position aircraft for final landing approach, is provided by both the military services and FAA. Operating under delegation from FAA, the military services operate this approach service at some military airfields as though they are isolated from the rest of the aviation community, even if sharing this service is possible. The approach control fa- cilities operated by the different military services and FAA perform identical functions; although the techniques may vary and the systems are referred to by different names. Agency/department Approach control -cility FAA Terminal Radar Approach Control Air Force Radar Approach Control Navy Radar Approach Traffic Control Center Army Army Radar Apprcach Control At some locations local agreements have been made for civilian operated facilities to provide approach control and other services for nearby military bases during periods of light military traffic. FAA, however, has no procedure that we could pinpoint for systematic review of delegated airspace to determine when consolidating approach control facilities might result in lower cost or improved safety and effective- ness. 11 CHAPTER 3 POTENTIAL FOR CONSOLIDATING APPROACH CONTROL FACILITIES Under the Federal Aviation Administration Act of 1958, the Federal Aviation Administration is authorized to provide facilities and establish procedures for regulating air traffic for efficient use of the Nation's airspace. FAA may assign air traffic control authoritv and related airspace to the military services when it is mutui1ly agL.~:ble. According to FAA officials, in some cases, deleoatir zspace to the? military is not efficient or economical. ), FAA officials told us that the agency has no procedures fcc determining when consolidating adjacent approach control facilities may result in lower costs or improved effectiveness. CONTROL OF AIRCRAFT IN AIRSPACE FAA has divided air traffic operations into three func- tions: enroute control, approach control, and airport traffic/terminal control. (See p. 13.) Enroute traffic Enroute control is handled by 21 FAA Air Route Traffic Control centers that monitor all aircraft operating under instrument flight rules within their space. When flying in airspace controlled by the centers, a pilot files a flight plan and is assured separation from other planes flying under instrument flight rules but not from planes flying under visual flight rules. The centers operate with an array of sophisticated electronic radar, communication, and computer equipment. Enroute centers are responsible for airspace covering many thousands of square miles, from 5,000 feet upward. They also delegate airspace and monitoring responsibility to terminal radar approach control facilities. Radar approach control facil. ies These facilities handle traffic in airspace delegated by the enroute centers. Radar approach control facilities pro- vide air traffic control for arriving and departing aircraft and are the vital air traffic control link between the tower and the enroute control centers. They are generally associated 12 Yb (II 00 PC E 0 urn "o. 0 E m..50 9L .. :: .; ~~ii~:::: :::::::: :'a (U 0 . · :::;::·I . :i::~~fS::: · · :1:::::...o 2· 'CC 0.W ~.. :···:.:·::: I13 1 3~~~~~~~~~~~~-U w~ U c 09 U. ag U.W > o Jag U Z Z z4 gmg IXZ o y :0 usu 2: U. a YCo wQ'~ Odc Z to U. &U 14U o o a ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~C XIL0 X (L -J ww L~U. Ckc0 0.1-JJ u U r ) U 14~~~~:Oj with a primary airport but also serve satellite or seccndary airports. Each facility (see p. 14) has surveillance radars and controls traffic in a rather large airspace. The airspace delegated to a center varies depending on the location, but it usuz t covers about 25 nautical miles, up to an elevation of 12, feet. (See p. 13.) At the time of our review, FAA operated about 158 such facilities in the United States and the Defense Department operated 57. Based on Navy estimates, the annual operating cost for each DOD facility averaged about $1.4 million. The facilities operated by the military also serve civilian air- ports located in their areas of responsibility. Airport traffic/ terminal control Once an aircraft is on a final approach, about 5 nautical miles from the tower, up to an altitude of approximately 2,500 feet, monitoring responsibility is transferred to con- trollers at the airport. This is called terminal control. (See p. 16.) Pilots land their aircraft with or without the aid of the controller, depending on the capability of the airport's navigational aid systemL. Delegation of approach control function By formal agreement, FAA delegates approach control authority to the military when it is mutually agreeable. According to one FAA official, this is usually done whenever the military requests control of a given airspace, provided such control does not conflict with FAA's overall air traffic management. The official said the arrangement is based par- tially on the belief that it is more reasonable for the mili- tary to control air traffic in some areas (for example, where military aircraft are predominant) and partially on the mili- tary's need to use controllers who have returned from overseas duty. Recommendations concerning delegation of approach control authority are made at the local level between militatv instal- lation commanders and the appropriate enroute control center. However, approval and withdrawal of this authority must be approved by FAA and the military services at the national level. Also, local differences must be resolved through ap- propriate channels at the national level. But, according to FAA officials, no procedures exist for systematically review- ing the operational or cost effectiveness of delegated ap- proach control authority, even in disputed cases. 15 w W S W IL~ *0 U 0 Loo I U Ui 'iWU WLJ lu~l Z4I S-aL 16 Within the continental United States, there are 20 enroute control centers and 208 approach control facili- ties. Fifty-seven of the approach control facilities are operated by the military, 133 by FAA, and 18 jointly. CONSOLIDATING APPROACH CONTROL OPERATIONS CAN RESULT IN SAVINGS The delegation of approach control authority to the mili- tary departments without periodic review by FAA to assess con- tinued need has resulted in duplicate operations in localities where a single approach control would seem both feasible and cost effective. Since approach control facilities generally have the capability to monitor and control traffic in a large area, the need to operate facilities where airspace can be covered by a nearby facility is questionable. We visited FAA and military facilities near Norfolk, Virginia; the Central Valley of California; and on the island of Oahu, Hawaii. Norfolk area approach control operations Both FAA and the military opera-e approach control fa- cilities in the Norfolk area. The FPA-operated facility, located at the Norfolk Regional Airport, serves Langley Air Force Base, the Norfolk Naval Air Station, Felker Army Air- field, and Patrick Henry Airport. The Navy's radar approach traffic control center located at the Oceana Naval Air Sta- tion, is responsible only for traffic in that area. (See map on p. 59.) Military and FAA officials disagree over the Navy's need to operate the Oceana center. Navy officials contend that the Oceana center is justified because of --the high volume of military jet traffic at the air station and --the military's unique flight rules (for example, air- craft separation needs to be controlled but does not have to conform to the FAA standard). However, a local FAA official pointed out that aircraft separation criteria could be adjusted to accommodate the Navy's needs, as they are for the military jet traffic at nearby Langley Air Force Base. 17 FAA officials in Norfclk emphasized that a detailed study would be required to determine the effect of merging the two facilities, but they said they believe a consolidated approach control facility would result in lower operating costs and more efficient use of the airspace. In fact, in a recent FAA-sponsored study by a joint military and civilian group, local FAA officials recommended that their facility assume the Oceana approach control responsibility within 3 years. The study group, however, disagreed and stated that the Oceana requirement is best served by military controllers because of the type of aircraft and mission involved. The chairman of the study group told us the group did not actually investigate the recommendation that the centers be consolidated. He said that the group's disagreement was based on its hesitancy to add another military airfield to FAA facility's already heavy workload. He did acknowledge that there are enough potential advantages to warrant a review of consolidation, but he pointed out that FAA has no program for periodically conducting such reviews. A local FAA offi- cial did not believe Oceana's mission or the type of aircraft which used the airfield would prevent a consolidation. Approach control operations in Central Valley Two locations in the Central Valley of California offer the potential for consolidated approach control facilities. One of these locations includes separate facilities at the Lemoore Naval Air Station, Fresno Air Terminal, and Castle Air Force Base, and the other includes adjacent facilities at McClellan and Travis Air force Bases. In discussing these arrangements with local FAA ard military officials, we found that consolidating control at two locations would dramatically lower operating costs. The FAA terminal radar approach control for the Sacramento area is located at McClellan and is the product of an earlier merger involving McClellan, Mather, and Beale Air Force Bases. The Sacramento facility's assumption of approach control re- sponsibility for the Beale area was made possible by relaying a radar signal between the two bases. According to an FAA official, a similar system could be installed between McClellan and Travis, thus enabling the Sacramento facility to assume control of the Travis airspace. We were told the system would cost about $876,000, including site acquisition, engineering, procurement, and other support items. The resulting merger of McClellan and Travis would eliminate the need for about 18 32 controllers, lower operating costs by an estimated $450,000 1/ a year, and eliminate the need for the $2.7 mil- lion Travis facility. In addition to reduced operating cost, an FAA official said that consolidation would result in safer, more efficient use of the available airspace. Until 1974, FAA also operated the approach control fa- cility for s'he Lemoore Naval Air Station. At that time, FAA relinquished control to the Navy and began operating a smaller approach control facility in nearby Fresno. These two facili- ties, plus the Air Force facility at the Castle base, employ a total of 64 controllers. However, an FAA official told us that the Lemoore facility could handle all approach control services at the three bases using only 40 controllers. The reduction of 24 controllers would save an estimated $338,000 1/ a year in operating costs. Approach control on Oahu Island Air traffic around Hawaii is monitored by FAA through a joint use FAA and Air Force Air Route Traffic Control Center. The center tracks aircraft until they are about 25 to 30 miles from the island, at which time they are transferred to the ap- proach control at Honolulu International Airport for landing at Honolulu International Airport; Hickharm Air Force Base; Wheeler Army Activity; Wheeler Air Force Base; and the Naval Air Station, Barbers Point. Aircraft destined for the Marine Corps Air Station, Kaneohe Bay, are transferred to the Kaneohe Approach Control Facility. Permanent radar approach traffic control center for Kaneohe The approach control center at Honolulu International Airport does not cover the Kaneohe Bay side of the island be- cause of nearby mountain ranges which peak at over 3,100 feet. The Kaneohe Bay station uses radio communications to guide aircraft into approach position or into position to be picked up by its ground controlled approach (CCA) unit since it does not have radar with sufficient range, to provide approach and departure coverage. During the review of facilities in Hawaii, we found that the Marine Corps Air Station, Kaneohe Bay, is planning to in- stall a permanent radar air traffic control facility. The l/Includes salaries only, not fringe benefits. 19 estimated cost for such a facility--not including equipment-- is estimated at about $938,000. According to Navy estimates, a typical radar approach traffic control center's capital equipment costs about $2.7 million. There is little traffic in the Kaneohe airspace and only one runway is used for ar- rivals and departures. The station operates on a 16-hour a day basis and is generally closed on Sundays, holidays, and some Saturdays. During the periods when it is closed, the joint use Air Force and FAA air route traffic control center monitors and controls the Kaneohe airspace. Few, if any, aircraft use Kaneohe Bay during the night, and FAA rarely has to direct aircraft to that location. We identified three organizations at Kaneohe which have surveillance radar that could be used for control purposes if properly located on tie base. We suggested possible alterna- tives to building the proposed facility. Additione v, we found that FAA had completed a study on the feasibility f consolidating its approach control facility at Honolulu Intetnational Airport into its air route traffic control center. The study concluded that such a consolidation would save approximately $1.5 million annually. Since the center currently controls the Kaneohe airspace 8 hours daily, it too appears to be a consolidation alternative to be con- sidered. T'he Navy did not find the alternatives we suggested suit- able. Instead, the Navy plans as another alternative to up- date the present system in lieu of constructing a new facil- ity. They state that the new system will provide adequate air control capability without the need for the proposed construc- tion. CONCLUSION The absence of periodic evaluatioIns of approach control arrangements by FAA has limited its ability to insure maximum and efficient use of the Nation's airspace and the resources necessary to manage the airspace. RECOMMENDATION We recommend that the Administrator of FAA, in coordina- tion with the Secretary of Defense, establish procedures for evaluating the potential for consolidating the management of adjacent airspaces and consolidate where practical. 20 AGENCY COMMENTS AND OUR EVALUATION DOD and Transportation in response to an earlier version of this report (see apps. I and II) generally agree that in- creased planning and coordination to assure economy, effi- ciency, and minimum investment in aviation resources is desir- able. The Navy and Air Force were also willing to actively participate in evaluations of potential consolidation. DOD, however, cites the -- need to operate facilities to train and maintain the proficiency of military air traffic controllers, --fear of being overly committed to a civilian controller force, degrading the readiness posture of the military services, and --need to operate facilities at stations with a large volume of high performance air traffic (jet aircraft). While the Navy agrees that consolidating its Oceana fa- cility with the FAA's approach control facility at the Norfolk Regional Airport is possible, they do not feel such a move is viable for reasons cited above. Both the military services and the FAA approach control facilities are staffed with highly trained and experienced personnel who are performing basically the same functions. Much larger areas than Norfolk that have more diverse aircraft and a variety of sophisticated military operations have been consolidated under an FAA approach control. The FAA approach control facility for the San Francisco Bay-Oakland area, for example, manages the airspace for two major international air- ports and two naval air stations, handling a variety of air- craft including high performance aircraft. The FAA Sacramento approach control facility serves three Air Force bases and two major civilian airports. The military aircraft include fighters and bombers. We recognize the need to train military air traffic con- trollers for combat situations. What is needed, in our view, is a determination of the minimum number of military con- trollers needed to operate military facilities in a conbat situation and the assurance that these individuals are prop- erly trained. Staffing should not be based on the number needed to operate facilities in the United States. 21 We are proposing that the opportunities for consolidation be independently examined from a total resource standpoint and that the most appropriate action be taken to increase effi- ciency. In the San Joaquin Valley, for example, the most ap- propriate action may be to expand the Navy facility. The Navy indicates that this would be necessary if they assume the re- sponsibility for the FAA facility. We believe that the activities discussed in this chapter offer an excellent potential, because of their geographical location, for using resources more efficiently through inter- serviLe/interagency coordination and cooperation. The Air Force, in responding to our suggestion that the Central Valley offers potential for consolidation, agrees that such a venture, in some cases, permits more efficient use of airspace and resources. The Air Force will not accept that our suggestion offers valid economic and operational advan- tages until a detailed evaluation is made. They are willing to participate in such as evaluation. DOD's willingness to actively participate in evaluations of potential consolidations or mergers i's constructive and will result, we believe, in more efficient use of the Nation's aviation resources and a broader national logistics base for support of military opertions. 22 CHAPTER 4 DUPLICATE NAVIGATIONAL AID SYSTEMS ARE USED AT MILITARY AIRFIELDS Better coordination between the military and civil aviation sectors, as well as within the military itself, could provide operational safety and result in more effi- cient use of navigational aids at airfields. CATEGORIES AND FUNCTIONS OF NAVIGATIONAL AIDS_ Pilots use navigational aids to help locate airports and land aircraft. Generally, these aids fall into one of two categories, 4precision or nonprecision, depending on the kind of information they provide. A precision system provides information about the direc- tion of flight and angle of descent once the aircraft is within about 8 miles of the runway. The two kinds of preci- sion aids are: --The instrument landing system which automatically relays the approach information to cockpit instru- ments enabling the pilot to read the data and to make landing decisions based on this information. --The precision approach radar which is operated by a radar technician on the ground. In a precision ap- proach radar system, the technician obtains the data, interprets it, and relays the information to the pilot. When used with a nonprecision airport surveillance radar, the combination is known as the ground con- trolled approach radar system. (See pp. 24 and 25.) Nonprecision aids provide directional guidance and some- times distance measurement but no angle of descent informa- tion. However, these devices emit radio signals which air- craft can pick up sometimes as far as 200 miles from the air- port. They also can aline the aircraft with the airport run- way, sometimes before the approach control facility has the aircraft under surveillance. In good weather, a pilot can bring the aircraft down using nonprecision navigational aids (without an instrument landing system or precision approach radar). The common nonprecision radio aids are the very high frequency (VHF) omnidirectional range system, the tactical air navigation (TACAN) system, and nondirectional beacons. 23 SOURCE: U.S. ARMY GROUND CONTROLLED APPROACH (GCA) RADAR UNIT CONSISTS OF TWO RADAR SYSTEMS-- PRECISION APPROACH AND AIRPORT SURVEILLANCE. OPERATING TECHNICIANS AT THE RADAR INDICATORS TAKE CONTROL OF THE AIRCRAFT FROM THE APPROACH CONTROL CENTER AND GUIDE THE PILOT TO THE RUNWAY. 24 l~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~ I =. | i 0 D' ~~~~~~~~~~a ,r- ~I _z 0 :1~~~k 1-a~s~r-i I~ D Q,. 0~ [~ I-J 0 mYT. ! : 4 0- Z 0 2 0 25 Whether or not precision or nonprecision aids are required for landing aircraft depends generally on visibility and prevailing wind conditions. Military and civilian use of navigational aids The military services and civilian aviation use several different types of navigational aids. For example, the Army uses ground controlled approach radar as its precision system. The VHF omnidirectional range system is used as the Army non- precision system; however, it lacks mobility. (See p. 34.) Therefore, the Army uses nondirectional beacons for deployment purposes. The Army also uses the instrument landing system at a few installations to keep pilots proficient in instrumenta- tion procedures. The Navy uses GCA radar and the nonprecision tactical air navigation system (see p. 35! at naval air stations. Both systems are suited to deployed operations. The Navy also uses the less precise nondirectional beacon as a backup or alternative tactical system. And, at five naval air sta- tions, the automatic carrier landing system is used as a pre- cision system for aircraft carrier landing training. The Air Force uses the instrument landing system as its primary precision navigational aid and the tactical air navi- gation system for nonprecision purposes. Since the instrument landing system is not suited to operations under deployed con- ditions, a GCA radar system is also used at Air Force instal- lations. The GCA system acts as a backup for the instrument landing system and provides precision capability on runways without instrument landing systems. In summary, navigational aids are used at military and civilian airfields throughout the Nation as follows: 26 Air Navigational aids Army Navy Force Civilian Precision approaches: Precision approach radar a/X a/X a/X Instrument landing systems limited b/limited X X Nonprecision approaches: Tactical air navigation - X X c/limited VHF omnidirectional range X - X X Nondirectional beacons X X X X Loc.llizer portion of instrument landing systems limited - X X Airport surveillance radar a/X a/X a/X d/X a/Part of the ground control approach. b/Automatic carrier landing system. c/Distance measurement portion. d/Very rare in occurrence. POTENTIAL FOR STANDARDIZATION OF CIVIL AND MILITARY EQUIPMENT Due to the lack cf navigational aid standardization, military airfields, particularly those of the Air Force, pro- vide multiple systems, some which accommodate few users. For example, the VHF omnidirectional range system was initially developed by the civil aviation community. Later the mili- tary developed the tactical air navigation system which pro- vides the basic functions of the VHF omnidirectional range system (to emit radio signals long distances to aircraft instruments). The tactical air navigation system, however, has an additional capability of distance measurement not available from the VHF omnidirectional range system. Because the VHF omnidirectional range and tactical air navigation systems use different frequency ranges (very high frequency (VHF) and ultra-high frequency, respectively), they require different equipment on the ground as well as in the air. While civil aviation continues to use the VHF omni- directional range system, they developed a modification to 27 aircraft instrumentation which permits them to uise the distance measurement portion of the tactical air navigation system. Thus our National Airways System requires both sys- tems. The ground equipment is often combined and is called a VORTAC. In that the tactical air navigation system was developed to support military requirements, Navy and Air Force aircraft are equipped with that system's instrumentation. The Air Force, however, also equips its aircraft with the older VHF omnidirectional range capability. For some Air Force air- craft (particularly certain trainers), VHF omnidirectional range rather than tactical air navigation is the nonprecision system. As a result, Air Force airfields tend to be equipped with both systems. Nineteen Air Force and three other military installations have invested over a half million dollars in VHF omnidirec- tional range systems to support the T-37 training aircraft. This is 1 of 3 types of _ircraft out of 37 in the Air Force inventory equipped for the VHF omnidirectional range system but not the tactical air navigation system. Additionally some bases require the VHF omnidirectional range system for con- tractor aircraft or aircraft of other military services or nonmilitary Federal agencies. Navigational aid systems are expensive to install and operate and therefore proliferation of such aids should be avoided where possible. Based on a June 1974 Air Force study of flight facilities at a sample of 47 installations, average staffing and investment and operating costs per unit were as follows: Average number Average initial Average annual of personnel investment cost operating and authorized for per unit maintenance each type of Naviaational aid (note a) cost per unit facility Ground controlled approach (airport surveillance radar plus precision approach radar) $1,637,325 $431,087 18 Precision approach radar 810,835 339,314 13 Instrument landing system 66,478 :5,954 2 Tactica) air navigation system 18,831 31,005 2 VHF omnidirectional range system 23,776 20,892 1 a/Represents cost for equipment only. Military construction and installa- tion cost not included. Equipment has been in operation over 15 years. 28 EFFECTIV.3 MANAGEMENT OF NAVIGATIONAL AIDS CAN REDUCE DUPLICATION Navigational aids provide a variety of capabilities. Some of the bases visited operate multiple aids. McClellan and Travis Air Force Bases, for example, operate instrument landing, VHF omnidirectional range, precision approach radar, and tactical air navigational systems and nondirectional beacons. Considering their use, some of the various naviga- tional aids at military airfields could be eliminated without reducing safety. Reducing requirements for recision na atona aids at Air Force bases The instrument landing system based on the Air Force regulation 100-11 and implemented by the "Terminal Precision Approach Control Program," is the primary Air Force precision approach system. The precision approach radar acts as a backup capability. As of August 1975, the Air Force had 143 precision ap- proach radar systems operating at an estimated $48.6 million annually. At the same time 107 instrument landing systems were operating at about $5 million annually. The reason precision approach radar is so much more expensive is that each system requires about 13 people to operate and maintain it, while an instrument landing system requires only 2 main- tenance people. In the past the Air Force has operated many airfields with only one instrument landing system servicing one runway direction. To allow use of the other runway direction, the Air Force provided precision approach radar capability which actually could serve both runway directions. Ultimately, precision approach radar and Instrument landing systems are to be replaced by a microwave landing system. While initial installation of the microwave system at Air Force bases will begin after 1980, full implementation is not expected until sometime between 1991 and 1995. Meanwhile the Air Force is renovating its instrument landing systems by replacing older tube-type systems with more reliable solid stats systems. These solid state systems are being installed at many airfields and will cover both run- way directions. This will permit the Air Force to phase out som.e 66 approach radar systems by about 1981. 29 The Air Force plans to keep about 77 precision approach systems operational beyond 1981 for (1) tactical deployment in contingency situations since no suitable mobile instrument landing system exists, (2) overseas locations where foreign military aircraft not equipped to use the instrument landing system must be accommodated, (3) locations where terrain, excessive site prepar: .ion costs, or airspace restrictions prevent instrument landing system installations, (4) geograph- ically remote bases where no practical alternate base exists, (5) bases with mission requirements of such sensitivity that duplicate approach aids are warranted, and (6) locations where pilot training is the primary mission. Savings from adjusting the instrument landing system renovation schedule While the Air Force program will apparently save the Government millions of dollars, we believe additional savings are available from -- eliminating precision approach radar systems earlier, -- forgoing installation of instrument landing systems for seldom used runway directions, and --forgoing the installation of instrument landing systems at airfields which are to continue using precision ap- proach radar until full microwave landing system imple- mentation. Under the program, the precision approach radars to be eliminated will be removed when both runway directions of airfields are covered by instrument landing systems. The Air Force is first replacing the older tube-type instrument land- ing systems with solid state systems. In subsequent years it will install the new solid state system for runway directions not previously covered. If this procedure were reversed, however, the costly precision approach radars could be re- moved sooner because runways would have complete coverage by using the old instrument landing system for one direction and the new system for the other. To illustrate, Mather Air Force Base, California, has an instrument landiig system on one of its runways. Its first solid state syzt'm was scheduled for 1976 installation with the second following in 1978. The 1976 installation will re- place the existing system and thus the airfield's precision approach radar will continue until 1978 for coverage of both 30 runway directions. By installing the first solid state instrument landing system on the runway direction that does not have the system, the precision approach radar could probably be eliminated 2 years early saving the Government about $650,000 in operating costs. Additionally, the base operates VHF omnidirectional range and tactical air naviga- tional systems. We noted many such cases where the expensive Precision approach radar operation could apparently be eliminated earlier. An Air Force official said the tube-type instrument landing systems are being replaced first because funds are available for replacement but not for new construction, which is required for runway directions not previously covered. Coordinating the need for seldom used navigational aids The program generally calls for an instrument landing system for both runway d:irections at its airfields. Weather conditions at some Air Force bases, however, are such that the instrument ·landing system or precision approach radar would seldom be required for both runway directions. For example, at McClellan Air Force Base the weather is charac- teristically clear when tile less frequently used runway direc- tion is in operation. In fact, Air Force weather analyses showed that the instrument landing syztrn on that runway di- rection should be required, due to weacher conditions, only about 9 hours per year. Yet both runway directions are sched- uled to receive new solid state systems. The nearby Sacramento Metropolitan Airport commissioned a new instrument landing system in January 1977 which enables aircraft to land in either direction. This runway has the same alinement as McClellan's, and military aircraft making instrument landings during emergency conditions could be ac- commodated. Three other Air Force bases are scheduled to receive multiple instrument landing systems. Air Force officials said that the Air Force had not established frequency-of-need criteria for justifying instru- ment landing systems; any need could be sufficient justifica- tion. We question, however, the need for multiple instrument landing systems at many Air Force bases, especially those -- in areas which have prolonged periods of ciear weather and one direction landings predominate and 31 is nearby --where another military or civilian airport and can provide emergency support during unusual weather situations. to install We also noted that the Air Force is planning even though a second instrument landing system at some basestraining and precision approach radar is to be retained for systems at the other contingencies. Operating both of these same installations is unnecessary. instru- Many major civilian airports do not use multiple units of air reserve flying ment landing systems. A number operate are based at such civilian airports and apparently available without duplicate precision approach capabilities Navy rely on only at Air Force bases. Further, the Army and one precision approach aid. a safe To ascertain if weather conditions will permit are briefed approach at the destination airfield, pilotsinclude suitable before flying. Additionally, flight plans weather condi- alternate airfields for landing in the event at the pilot to land tions ultimately do not permit the to estab- planned destination. This is another alternative aid systems at lishing functionally duplicate navigational military airfields. Duplicate precision navigational aids at Navy installations carrier land- Five naval air stations use the automatic aid which can provide ing system, a precision navigational also operates preci- varying services. Each of these stations landing systems. sion approach radar systems and/or instrument are also pro- However, the services provided by these systems The necessity of this vided by the carrier landing system. costly duplication is questionable. Oceana Naval Air Station, for example, has precision approach radar that is used for approaches to all four pri- A carrier landing maty and two of four secondary runways. Plans have system is used on one of the primary runways. system to all primary been made to expand the carrier landing type of preci- and secondary runways. Furthermore, another system, is also sion aid, similar to the instrument landing plans have been carried planned for one runway. When all the of precision naviga- out, Oceana will have the following types tional aid coverage on its eight runways: 32 Runways Precision navigational Priar Secon y aid coverage 23 4 I 3 A Precision approach radar (existing) x x x x x x Automatic carrier landing system (existing) (note a) x Automatic carrier landing system 'planned) (note a) x x x x x x x Type of instrument landing system [RN-28] x a/Under this :-rangement, the oldcer, traditional precision approach radar appartus could '. eiiminated. However, Navy officials disagreed about whether the automatic carrier landing system would be an acceptable replacement for the existing precision approach radar system. Our analysis indicates elimination of precision approach radar at Oceana could reduce staffing by five positions and save about $52,000 a year in personnel costs alone. Duplicate VHF omnidirectional ran e capability at Air Force installations The VHF omnidirectional range system (see p. 34) is a radio facility used extensively for departure, enroute, and approach navigation. Its reception is limited to line-cf- sight, and its usable range varies according to aircraft altitude. Air Force regulations state that, because of the in- frequent need for airfield VHF omnidirectional range capa- bility, the omnidirectional facilities will be operated only under exceptional circumstances. Two circumstances specified as acceptable are -- area navigational assistance for training aircraft not equipped with the tactical air navigational system and -- unique requirements essential to flying safety. These circumstances can apparently be used to justify the need for a VHF omnidirectional range capability at most Air Force bases. In October 1975, Headquarters, U.S. Air Force, ques- tioned its subordinate commands regarding the need for VHF omnidirectional range and VHF omnidirectional range tactical air navigational facilities at 53 installations (36 VOR and 17 VORTAC). One command listed 81 Air Force installations 33 · Pdi~ag~dd ~ ~ ~~~~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~~~~~~~~P 1_I_·:-·-: - ~~au s u CD U OxO 40e L=- ccc Ou. 0 34~~~~~3 0 U. uz IL - I.- U.l -r - ow . B OUz U- LU L y UI L 'o U o: z U z 35 frequently visited by the T-37 aircraft involved in instrument and approach training requiring VHF omnidirectional range sup- port. This would represent an investment of over $1.9 mil- lion, plus an annual operating cost of over $1.6 million. Other justifications included the need to support other aircraft not equipped with the tactical air navigational sys- tem anid the need to provide a backup for the tactical air navigational system. At the time of our review 38 responses had been received indicating some achievement had been made toward reducing VHF omnidirectional range levels; only 4 responses recommended decommissioning. Six systems were subsequently decommis- sioned. In light of other precision and nonprecision navigational aid systems available to nontactical air navigational system ccmpatible aircraft, including FAA and military radar approach control centers, extensive use of VHF omnidirectional equip- ment at Air Force airfields and in aircraft is questionable. Little used nondirectional beacons The Navy and the Air Force have recognized the infrequent use of nondirectional beacons and are taking action to elimi- nate these aids when no longer necessary for mission accom- plishment. For example, at Moffett and Alameda Naval Air Stations, nondirectional beacons, which had been in operation early in our review, have been decommissioned. An Air Force message to various commands stated that bud- get constraints, congressional investigate'nns, and our reviews require that redundant navigational aids be minimized and that certain nondirectional beacons be decommissioned. It pointed out that the primary reason for retaining the beacons had been proficiency training, but tactical air navigation systems and radar service were now available as alternative aids at all bases. The message addressed 14 of about 50 beacons. Accord- ing to Air Force estimates, decommissioning the 14 will save about $135,000 in annual operating and maintenance costs. CONCLUSIONS Military and civilian aviation administrators have not established effective procedures for coordinating their navigational aid equipment requirements. Further, DOD is not controlling the authorization and use of navigational aids to avoid duplication and assure use only where there is a valid requirement. 36 RECOMMENDATIONS We recommend that the Secretary of Defense and the Administrator of FAA establish effective procedures to coordi- nate requirements for navigational aid systems and promote equipment standardization. We recommend that the Secretary of Defense develop effective criteria and standards for the authorization and use of navigational aid systems at military airfields and take action to decommission those navigational aids that are not necessary for safe aircraft opertion. AGENCY COMMENTS AND OUR EVALUATION DOD, in its response to our draft report, recognizes the need to avoid proliferation of redundant equipment. The Navy and Air Force are willing to meet with the Federal Aviation Administrator and actively participate in efforts to improve coordination procedures, establish standards, and eliminate duplication. The Secretary of Transportation pointed out that DOD has historically taken the position that at many locations avia- tion facilities and support services are vital to defense needs. He did not feel that FAA is in a position to make judgment on matters involving DOD's determination of national defense interest. While FAA is not in a position to make final defense determinations, we believe they have the capability and ex- pertise to assist DOD in assuring that there is a minimum of duplication and investment in equipment and personnel at Fed- eral airfields. The Navy recognizes this in referring to the lack of coordination in the past. They point out that the recent coordination between DOD and FAA on next generation navigational aids (i.e., Global Positioning System and Micro- wave Landing System) is expected to result in development of systems which will meet the needs of both the military and the civil aviation community. This should reduce the number of systems in use. We believe this is indicative of the co- ordination efforts to be emphasized in planning requirements for current and future systems and for identifying potential approaches to reduce investment in equipment and personnel resources through the means of effective interagency/inter- departmental coordination and support. The Navy fully supports our recommendation to decommis- sion navigational aids not absolutely necessary for safe 37 aircraft operation. They agree to thoroughly explore the feasibility of eliminating the older precision approach radar apparatus with the expansion of the automatic carrier landing system at the five air stations. Also, they state that con- sideration is being given to authorizing the automatic carrier landing system as a shore-based system, once certain technical and support problems are resolved. We believe this proposed action will result in considerable savings. T'>e Air Force also states that they will continue to de- commission those systems not absolutely necessary, and after January 1377, will only operate three nondirectional beacons in the United States. The Air Force does not agree with our suggestion to in- stall the new solid state instrument landing system instead of first replacing the old tube-type system. This would permit earlier removal of the costly precision approach radars. The Air Force stated that the need to replpTe the old systems is urgent because logistical support could not be provided beyond 1977. The Air Force's terminal precision approach control program, however, lists several old tube- type systems that are scheduled for replacement as late as 1980. Provisions will have to be made for support for old systems remaining beyond 1977; otherwise, other available navigational aids will be required. The Air Force also states that all Air Force aircraft are not equipped with instrument landing system receivers and that precision approach radar equipment will be required until the 1980s, when it is projected that all aircraft will be so equipped. We recognize the requirement for precision approach radar will continue at some bases; but, at many bases, there will be infrequent requirements to support the few aircraft currently not equipped with instrument landing receivers. We believe the Air Force should consider the early elimination of precision approach radar equipment and personnel at bases where they are not absolutely necessary for aircraft safety, particularly where more than one airfield can serve the same vicinity. Tn the Sacramento area, for example, there are four Air Force airfields within a 50-mile radius with preci- sion approach radar systems. One of these airfields could provide a landing alternative for the other airfields in the vicinity when visibility, cloud cover, and/or prevailing winds make using the system mandatory. 38 The steps taken by the Navy and Air Force are positive actions to reduce duplications in their airport equipment. However, we believe that the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Transportation, through FAA, should take a more active role in coordinating navigational aid requirements and promoting standardization. 39 CHAPTER 5 CONSOLIDATING AVIATION WEATHER FACILITIES IS FEASIBLE The objective of the Department of Commerce aviation weather service is to furnish weather information necessary for safe and efficient flights. Though Commerce is respon- sible for insuring that aviation weather information are met efficiently, duplications exist. needs In many areas the information developed by the Defense Department's weather stations could be obtained from Federal weather information systems supporting civilian aviation. While it is recognized that the military needs to provide its own support overseas areas, coordination with other agencies in many on weather information in the United States could reduce the cost. PUBLIC LAWS PROVIDE FOR EFFICIENT FEDERAL WEATHER SUPPORT OF AVIATION Under section 803, Public Law 85-726, dated August 23, 1958, Commerce was assigned responsibility for -- making observations, measurements, investigations, and studies of atmospheric phenomena and establishing weather offices an' stations for information concern- ing probable weather conditions; -- preparing reports, forecasts, warnings, and advisories for safety and to facilitate air navigation; and -- coordinating weather requirements in the United States to maintain standard observations, promote efficient use of facilities, and avoid unnecessary duplication of services. Subsequently, section 304, Public Law 87-843, directed the Bureau of the Budget (now Office of Management and Budget) to provide the Congress annually with a budget showing (1) the scope of weather programs, (2) the specific program and funding assigned to each agency, and (3) the aspects goals and financial requirements. estimated In implementing this law, the Bureau issued Circular A-62 on November 13, 1963. This circular directed Commerce to prepare and maintain, assistance of other concerned agencies, a plan with the for the effi- cient use of Federal weather services and supporting The circular stated "the purpose of such planning research. is to achieve 40 the maximum integration of current and future services and research consistent with the effective and economical ac- complishment of mission requirements." The Federal Coordinator for Meteorological Services and Supporting Research, Commerce Department, has responsibility for preparing the plan which is coordinated through inter- agency committees that continuously review weather require- ments, services, and supporting research. Although the Federal weather plan describes coordinated programs for serving the public, it does not foster the inte- gration of common requirements and functions of the military services and civilian agencies. In addressing aviation weather services, the fiscal year 1976 plan stated: "Respoasibility for the Service is shared among three Federal departments--Commerce, Trans- portation, and Defense. "--The Department of Commerce provides meteorological services used by domes- tic and international civil aviation, and is responsible for meeting the common requirements of other agencies. "--The Department of Transportation makes recommendations to the Department of Commerce on civil aviation meteoro- logical services, provides specialized equipment and surface observations at certain airfields, disseminates weather information to users, and distributes weather data over civil teletypewriter systems. "--The Department of Defense serves the specialized global needs of military aviation and makes meteorological in- formation from its facilities avail- able to civil aviation." The major reason for the separate Defense system ap- parently is the philosophy that the military must retain self-sufficiency to support its U.S. operations during wartime conditions. Strict adherence to this philosophy inhibits the potential economies available from consolidat- ing requirements and functions. 41 Agencies operate many weather stations which, in many areas of the Nation, become duplicate support capabilities. We believe these functions can be consolidated, result- ing in substantial savings, within the United States without affecting the militazy's readiness posture. Jointly operated military-civilian weather stations could support military and civilian requirements while reducing overhead expenses. DUPLICATION AMONG NEIGHBORING WEATHER STATIONS As of April 1975, there were about 530 local weather ac- tivities directly supporting civilian and military flight operations throughout the Nation at an estimated annual cost of about $72 million. Number of Fiscal year 1975 Agency facilities operating budget (millions) Department of Commerce: National Oceanic and Atmos- heric Administration a/52 $11.0 Department of Transportation: Federal Aviation Adminis- tration 326 28.8 Total 378 39.8 Department of Defense: Air Weather Service (Air Force) 105 21.8 Naval Weather Service (Navy) b/47 8.4 Total 152 30.2 TOTAL 530 $70.0 a/Weather support is also available from other National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration facilities. b/Includes Marine Corps stations. 42 While some differences in operating styles exist, civilian and military weather stations perform essentially the same types of functions. Generally, they (1) observe and report weather conditions, (2) formulate short term fore- casts, and (3) brief pilots or flight crews on anticipated weather conditions. The information for their forecasts and briefings is compiled from local observations and data pro- vided by the Air Force Weather Service, Naval Weather Service, and the National Weather Service, Department of Commerce. In the geographical areas reviewed, we found -- four Air Force weather service stations operating near an FAA flight service station, -- two Navy weather service stations operating near a Federal Aviation Administration flight service sta- tion, --six Federal weather activities supporting aviation on one island, and -- Naval, Air Force, and FAA aviation weather stations operating near each other. Civilian and military personnel skills are extensive and can be merged in some areas. We believe that substantial *saings are available from integrating military and civilian -viation weather support requirements and capabilities. M litary requirements could be reduced by -- assigning surface weather observation to base organi- zations such as the control tower or fire department, as FAA does at some civilian airfields, -- using the National Weather Service forecast network for all short range local forecasts, and -- merging military aviation weather briefing require- ments and capabilities with those of FAA flight serv- ice stations to create regional briefing stations. 43 Four Air Force weather service stations near an FAA station Within 50 miles of Sacramento there are air weather service stations at Beale, Mather, McClellan, and Travis Air Force Bases. An FAA flight service station is in the same area. All of these activities are considered to have siLilar weather characteristics by the National Weather Service. As of June 30, 1975, the Air Force stations were assigned 98 personnel, although authorized 84. Distribution of the authorized positions was as follows: Position Beale Mather McClellan Travis Total Administrative staff 1 1 1 1 4 Weather officers 6 4 3 7 20 Weather observers 8 4 7 8 27 Weather forecasters 5 9 3 6 23 Communications/ electronics main- tenance staff 4 3 - 3 10 Total 24 21 14 25 84 During fiscal year 1975 the operating cost for these four stations was an estimated $1 million, of which $900,000 re- presents personnel costs. The FAA flight service station nearby, as of June 3C, 197T, was assigned 22 personnel. A major difference between the military weather stations and the FAA flight service sta- tion is that the FAA does not forecast weatlher. The National Weather Service provides forecasts for majo. civilian airports in northern California from its office at Redwood City. These forecasts are distributed to the flight service stations to be used by civilian aviation. The Redwood City office employs about five personnel for this function. According to the meteorologist in charge, the Redwood City forecast office could, with three more personnel, provide aviation forecast services for the four Sacramento area mili- tary installations plus five other northern California Inili- tary installations. (These additional personnel could be military.) Forecasting is only part of the duties of a military forecaster; he also prepares and provides weather briefings 44 to flight crews. During fiscal year 1975, the four military stations gave about 38,000 briefings. FAA's Sacramento flight service station during the same period gave some 117,000 briefings. Although there are some differences in briefing requirements, the flight service station has the weather information and resources needed to furnish a standard military briefing. Combining the briefing workloads and calculating the required manpower based on FAA staffing criteria, the flight service station would require only five additional personnel to handle the entire briefing workload. Each of the four military installations employs weather observers around the clock to observe and report airfield conditions. Under Air Force manning criteria, this results in a minimum staffing allotment of 5 observers per installa- tion, or 20 for the 4 installations. Military observers per- form other functions, generally pertaining to administrative activities or support of the station's forecasting or brief- ing workloads. In contrast, FAA's flight service station is allotted one staffyear to make around-the-clock observations at one Sacramento airport. At the Sacramento Metropolitan Airport, FAA tower controllers make the observratinns as secondary duties. Assuming complete integration of military and civilian weather requirements and capabilities in the Sacramento area and an allotment of one staffyear to each military installa- tion airfield for surface observations, savings could possibly reach 57 positions and $600,000 annually. The savings in positions are summarized as follows: 45 Number of positions Elsting Integraed operations operations Savings Weather officers 20 a/4 16 Observers 27 b/4 23 Forecasters 23 c/8 15 Administrative 4 0 4 Communications-electronic maintenance staff 10 10 0 Total 84 26 58 a/One officer for each installation to act as a command weather liaison for such things as exercises and classified missions. b/One staffyear per installation. c/Five briefers for the flight service station plus three forecasters for the Redwood City office. Two Navy weather service stations near an FAA station Naval Air stations at Moffett Field and Alameda, Califor- nia, are located in northern California about 30 miles apart, and each has a weather station. As of late 1975, the Moffett Field weather station had a staff of 20 to support anti- submarine warfare operations. Across the bay the Alameda station had 14 personnel assigned to support the Naval Air Rework Facility, Navy Reserve, and Fleet Tactical Support Squadron flight operations. Both stations operate around the clock at an annual combined cost of about $421,000, of which $363,000 is for personnel. These personnel observe airfield weather conditions, forecast weather, and provide weather briefings to flight crews. During the year ended September 1975, the two sta- tions provided about 23,000 briefings by telephone, in face- to-face meetings, or by recorded message. At Moffett Field 6,600 or 64 percent of the briefings were by telephone or recorded message. Seven miles from Alameda and 23 miles from Moffett Field is an FAA flight service station located at the Metropolitan Oakland International Airport. Staffed with 43 personnel as of June 30, 1975, this station is allotted one staffyear for 46 taking the weather observations for the Oakland airport and during fiscal year 1975 provided over 215,000 pilot briefings. The flight service station used data from the Redwood City National Weather Service forecast office about 7 miles from Moffett Field. The National Weather Service meteorologist in charge indicated that Alameda and Moffett Field could receive fore- cast support from the Redwood City office. As with the Sacramento area, opportunities are evident for savings in northern California through integration of the military and civilian capabilities and requirements for avia- tion weather support. Six aviation weather stations on one island On the island of Oahu, Hawaii, there are six weather stations: an FAA flight service station, a National Weather Service forecast office, Air Force stations at Hickam Air Force Base and Wheeler Army Activity, plus the Navy and Marine Corps detachments at the Naval Air Station, Barbers Point, and Marine Corps Air Station, Kaneohe. At the time of our review the military had 63 personnel assigned to these stations which incurred an estimated fiscal year 1975 operating cost of $734,000. About $674,000 of this cost was for personnel. The National Weather Service forecast office is at the Honolulu International Airport, where runways are also used by Hickam Air Force Base. Since the forecast office handles the airport weather observations and forecasts, the Hickam Air Force Base weather station workload is primarily provid- ing weather briefings to the departing 'ir Force flight crews and weather advisories to military activities. The briefings, which depict the weather conditions the military flight is expected to encounter, are compiled in weather packets devel- oped by the base air weather station. The National Weather Service forecast office prepares long distance flight packages two to four times daily for commercial aircraft scheduled to depart from the Honolulu airport. Each package contains the departure airport fore- cast and enroute and destination weather information, plus data on possible alternate airports. The briefing packages prepared by the National Weather Service for the FAA flight service station contain all the data that would be necessary 47 distance to brief military pilots. Also FAA charts for long mili- flights are sufficient for use in briefing transoceanic Weather tary flights. Thus at the same airfield, the National similar Service and the Air Force independently develop weather briefing packages. forecasters Each of the three other military stations has crew brief- who develop airfield forecasts and provide flight airfield weather conditions. ings, and observers who report Honolulu air- According to its meteorologist in charge, the with port National Weather Servic-' forecast office could, local forecasts for the 5 additional personnel, provide all military. The average monthly briefing activity for the military facilities follows: Long distance Local Installation flights flights 1,000 500 Hickam Air Force Base 350 Wheeler Army Activity 0 a/150 450 Naval Air Station, Barbers Point Marine Corps Air Station, Kaneohe _b/O /80 Total 1,150 1,380 a/Half of these involve classified missions. b/There is an occasional long distance briefing. c/Includes only in-person briefings. Briefings are also issued hourly by telewriter. The long distance briefings which the Navy's Barbers independently Point detachment provides are prepared and given office. of the Hickam station and the Honolulu forecast Briefings for civilian general aviation (private and FAA Honolulu noncommercial) local flights are provided by the the fore- flight service station. These briefings include Weather casts for the entire area developed by the National official advised us that the Service forecast office. An FAAcapability flight service station has the to provide the the four weather briefings for local military flights from staff. military installations without increasing the 48 Navy and Air Force weather stations near an FAA flight service station Within 20 miles of Norfolk, Virginia, the Air Force and Navy each operate two weather stations at an annual cost of about $770,000. While these stations support military opera- tions, civilian aviation in the area receives its weather information from the FAA flight service station at Newport News, Virginia, about 25 miles from Norfolk. The manpower authorized for these facilities at the time of this review was as follows: Authorized Facility personnel Military Air Force: Langley Air Force Base 21 Fort Eustis 12 Navy: Norfolk Naval Air Station 14 Oceana Naval Air Station 16 Total 63 Civilian Flight service station: Newport News 18 TOTAL 81 Each military station has staff who develop short range forecasts for their respective airfields and provide weather briefings to pilots and flight crews. In contrast, the Na- tional Weather Service provides the forecasts for the Newport News and Norfolk airports from its Washington, D.C., forecast office about 150 miles away. According to the chief meteoro- logist from the forecast office, this office could provide the forecasts for all of the Norfolk area military installations with two additional personnel. Langley Air Force Base, Oceana and Norfolk Naval Air Stations, and the Newport News flight service station in- dependently provide around-the-clock weather briefings. The Langley station acts as a regional briefing station and, as such, provides telephone briefings to aircrews at two other 49 Air Force and one Army installation during their hours of reduced operation. The two Air Force bases are located over 275 miles away. Eight miles from Langley the FAA flight service station a so acts as a regional briefing station for civilian avia- t.on operating from that location and from the Norfolk Re- gional Airport located about 25 miles away. The Oceana and Norfolk Naval Air Stations' weather activities not only provide face-to-face briefings but also use closed circuit television systems to provide remote briefings to aircrews located at the station but some distance from the weather briefing facility. Thus, four weather stations close to one another brief aircrews electronically and do so with virtually no coordi- nation. INTEGRATING AVIATION W THER SUPPORT WITHOUT HARMING DEFENSE PREPAREDNESS Reasons given by weather officials for the military to operate weather detachments in the United States included the need to irovide --a trained deployable force to meet wartime contingen- cies, -- stateside assignments for personnel rotating from over- seas or shipboard, -- observations of weather conditions for flight opera- tions and resource protection, and -- specialized mission support to military flights which sometimes involve classified information. We believe each of these requirements can be met while achieving the efficiencies available through consolidation. A trained deployable force The primary mission of the Air Force air weather service is to provide a trained deployable weather information force to support military operations overseas in the event hostili- ties erupt. Under the Air Force plan, personnel from weather stations in the United States would deploy to supplement the weather force already assigned overseas. Positions vacated in the United States would be filled from the Reserves. 50 As of November 1975, the Air Force estimated it would need 932 Reserve personnel to fill positions of deploying weather service personnel. In other words, approximately 900 active duty personnel are required to be trained and ready for deployment in a contigency. However, air weather service stations in the United States employ approximately 2,000 personnel. The other 1,100 personnel are therefore needed more for operating U.S. bases than for military con- tingencies. To the extent that the National Weather Service can provide the weather information needs for certain air bases, the 2,000 personnel requirement could be reduced. Stateside military assignments Obviously, as long as the military requires weather per- sonnel overseas or on ships, there will be a requirement for positions to accommodate these people when they rotate back to the United States. Such positions should facilitate reten- tion of occupational proficiency. We believe, however, such positions would not have to be sacrificed under integrated management of local aviation weather activiti - Civilian and military personnel could jointly operate a weather station to provide for all aviation users. Observations of weather conditions Military weather detachments obsc-:,e weather at their installations to provide for (1) safe use of runways, (2) ade- quate protection of facilities during bad weather, and (3) de- velopment of short range forecasts. 2i.US, military weather officials contend observers are required at the installations. While observations are apparently necessary, assignment of surface observing responsibility o:cother base organiza- tions could reduce the number of observers required. FAA, for example, assigns surface observing responsibility to such ac- tivities as the control tower or runway fire department at some civilian airports. In early 1975 the Air Force estimated 155 observer positions could be saved worldwide by transfer- ring this responsibility to the airfield control tower, but took no action to eliminate the positions. Specialized mission support According to top-level military weather officers, mili- tary flights require support not typically provided civilian aviation because 51 -- military aircraft have unique performance characteris- tics; -- military missions may not follow standard aviation routes; -- military missions, such as practice bombing or mid-air refueling, require very detailed weather data; and -- some weather briefings involve classified missi:ns. We recognize that at times military flights operate unique situations which require specialized support. under With respect to the standard DOD weather briefing format, we found civilian weather stations have the capabilityhowever, provide virtually all of the required information. to ample opportunity exists for eliminating redundanciesTherefore, providing for unique military requirements. Joint while military- civilian weather stations, for example, could be responsive the military while eliminating the existing redundancies to developing aviation weather information. in Weather information becomes classified when it could re- veal the classified nature of a mission. In the Air the installation weather detachment does not prepare Force, classi- fied weather briefings. Instead, a staff weather obtains unclassified general weather data from the officer station and then develops the classified briefing for the mission. This practice seems to negate the need for a resident detachment to support classified missions. weather &fNCLUSION The weather information locations covered during this capabilities existing in the review offer an excellent op- portunity for Commerce, DOD, and FAA to pool resources. RECOMMENDATION We recommend that the Secretary of Commerce direct Federal Coordinator for Meteorological Services and the Support- ing Research to review, in coordination with the Secretaries of Defense and Transportation, the aviation weatner require- ments of the military and civilian communities in to detect those areas where duplicate capabilities an effort can be consolidated or provided under interservice/interdepartmental arrangements. 52 AGENCY COMMENTS AND OUR EVALUATION In response to an earlier version of this report, the Administrator of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Adminis- tration concurred with our recommendation and was willing to work with DOD and Transportation to achieve further improve- ments in economy and efficiency in providing weather services. He states that the Federal Coordinator for Meteorological Services and Supporting Research has begun considering prob- lems common to the National Weather Service and FAA and as a result of our report will consider those of DOD. The Navy agrees that opportunities exist for exchanging airways weather information with certain civil activities and tactical weather information with certain military activities in locations where the nature of supported military aviation operations permits. They state that Navy environmental sup- port requirements are such that they can generally provide needed support to other agencies, but, without increased per- sonnel education and training and an expanded environmental data base, other agencies could not meet Navy needs. In addi- tion to their unique needE cited earlier, they indicate the need for oceanic and atmospheric information, magnetics, and ballistics. While the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administra- tion may not distribute this type of information in the format used by the Navy, it does accumulate the data and could fur- nish the needed information in the desired format, if required. Regardless of the agency providing weather data, once given the raw data, the skills, and requirements, that agency could interpret and provide the needed weather information for everyone. Any agency performing the mission could still pro- vide for military training and proficiency. The Navy also indicated that consolidating weather fa- cilities at the Norfolk and Oceana stations, which incur volumes of 61,000 and 26,000 briefings per year, appears economically disadvantageous. We note that certain FAA flight service stations have provided substantially more weather briefings than the combined total for both subject facilities. The Oakland flight service station, for example, gave some 215,000 briefings during fiscal year 1975. The Air Force agrees that the three regions identified in the earlier version of this report (Norfolk, Sacramento, and Honolulu) and others of a similar nature should be examined in an effort to identify areas offering potential 53 savings of resources. The Air Force does not agree, however, that other base organizations should be tasked to make weather observations. They point out that the original Air Force space-saving estimate of 155 spaces made in their 1975 study (see p. 51), upon closer examination turned out to be only a saving of 54 spaces worldwide. We believe, however, that there is an opportunity to reduce personnel requirements at some locations. At civil airports, FAA permits weather observations to be performed by nonweather activities. The Air Force stated that it is embarked on an orderly program to make its weather service more efficient by combin- ing weather forecaster and observer career fields and auto- mating weather sensors and short range terminal forecasts. The automation program is not to be fully implemented until the 1980s. These actions, coupled with more effective co- ordination between military and civil agencies to eliminate the weather forecaster and observer functions at some bases, should orovide for more effective use of resources. The Air Force agreed that there are opportunities to derive manpower economies by either integrating Air Force forecasters into the National Weather Service or by inter- deoartmental arrangements with the National Weather Service, particularly during normal base flying hours. However, the Air Force wished to be assured of a quick response with weather assistance for efficient use of flying periods. We believe that centralized facilities coordinated between FAA, National Weather Service, and the military departments can provide real time weather service using closed-circuit television and other electronic means. These techniques are being used currently for across base dissemination of weather information. It would seem that similar means could be used from a joint centralized coordinated facility. The considerations by the Federal Coordinator for Mete- orological Services and Supporting Research of the problems pertaining to aviation weather services involving the National Weather Service and FAA and the extention of these considera- tions to the needs of DOD, should eliminate some unnecessary duplication and increase efficiency throughout the Federal Government in meeting weather information requirements. 54 CHAPTER 6 POTENTIAL FOR CURTAILING MILITARY AIRFIELD OPERATIONS Certain military airfields operate 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, even though traffic during late night hours and on weekends is very light. In some cases these airfields are within a few miles of another military or civilian airport which can provide adequate services during periods of low demand. We reviewed three of the many services provided at airfields and identified numerous opportunities to reduce expenditures by having airfields share services. DETERMINING OPERATION HOURS Military airfields usually operate around the clock, but their operating hours may be curtailed under certain circum- stances. For example, the Navy permits an airfield to close when (1) there is little traffic during recurring periods, (2) a nearby facility can handle any aircraft arriving in the area, and (3) the airfield's mission will not be affected. The Air Force criteria for an airfield to remain opera- tional on a 24-hour basis are that the base must (1) have an air defense commitment, (2) have a strategic air commitment, or (3) be 1 of 11 bases designated as "queen bee." (The latter are selected on the basis that their locations permit an Air Force pilot to fly any place in the United States and be within 500 nautical miles of a base having landing and re- fueling services.) Otherwise the local commander determines the operating hours. Likewise at Army airfields, commanders have jurisdiction over all matters concerning the operation and use of Army aviation within their commands. They determine the airfield functions and services and set operating hours based on the mission, available resources, and manpower. Occasionally the military services have attempted to reduce airfield costs by curtailing operations, but their efforts have not always been successful. In 1972, for in- stance, the Air Force identified 57 airfields for possible conversion from 24-hour to 16-hour a day operations, but only 11 of these airfields actually reduced their operating hours. 55 POTENTIAL TO PEDUCE SERVICES We selected three of the many support services provided at military airfields to assess the potential for reducing expenditures. We looked at (1) ground controlled approach radar, (2) weather services, and (3) transient aircraft maintenance. Ground controlled approach radar Numerous types of navigational aids can be used to assist pilots in making instrument approaches; most transmit signals directly to the aircraft, enabling pilots to navigate without ground assistance. GCA radar systems, unlike most other types of navigational aid systems, do not transmit signals to the aircraft. The system consists of an Airport Surveillance Radar and/or Precision Approach Radar and associated communi- cation equipment and controllers. The system displays azimuth and evaluation information on its scopes. Controllers on the ground are required to observe and interpret radar displays and transmit course and glide slope information by radio to the pilot and direct him to a safe approach route. An FAA official told us that civilian airports do not use GCA radar systems; they use only unmanned approach aids. The military's requirement for GCA radar at airfields in the United States is based on the need to -- train or maintain the proficiency of pilots in its use, since in contingency operations it may be :he only system available for precision approach landings; -- provide a backup to the instrument precision landing systems at remote installations or where mission sensitivity warrants such duplication; and -- provide a precision approach radar system at installa- tions where a precision instrument landing system is impractical. These requirements would not in our opinion justify operating a GCA radar system when there is little or no air traffic, when training opportunities are minimal, and when unmanned navigational aids are available. 56 Weather services Military installation weather stations observe and report weather conditions at airfields to provide information for safe runway use. Furthermore, they brief pilots before their flights on weather conditions they can expect to encounter. To provide these services, some airfields employ observers and forecasters 24 hours a day. Military officials generally object to obtaining weather briefings by telephone or having ..'ther conditions recorded by personnel as a secondary duty they contend that telephone briefings do not provide the free Llow of information that can be obtained in a face-to-face situation and that weather con- ditions may not be recorded as promptly as necessary. They pcint out, for instance, that controllers might be able to record weather conditions at most times but would be unable to do so when air traffic is heavy. However, weather service regulations permit pilots to obtain briefings by telephone--a practice already used by some military and civilian pilots. Some civilian airfields also use controllers or other employees to record weather conditions, and it seems unlikely that military controllers would be unable to do so during nights or weekends when air traffic is extremely light. Transient maintenance Some military airfields employ a crew 24 hours a day to service transient aircraft, although few transient aircraft arrive or depart during certain times. Military regulations do not require that all airfields employ transient maintenance crews and, in some instances, the regulations specify the volume of traffic needed to justify around-the-clock operations. In our opinion, how- ever, these criteria are too broad and subject to wide inter- pretation. The Air Force, for examrle, authorizes around- the-clock maintenance crews whenever an airfield averages more than 350 transient arrivals a month--regardless of the time of day the aircraft arrive or depart. If an airfield meets the numerical criteria, it is authorized to have a crew on duty at night, even if no aircraft ever arrive or depart at night. 57 INSTALLATIONS HAVING POTENTIAL TO REDUCE OPERATIONS Langley Air Force Base Transient maintenance, radar, and weather crews are employed 24 hours a day at Loangley despite little air traffic between midnight and 6 a.m. For example, an average of --one transient aircraft a night arrived at Langley between midnight and 6 a.m. during fiscal year 1975, -- one instrument approach a night was made between midnight and 6 a.m. during fiscal year 1975, and -- one weather briefing a day was given between 7 p.m. and 4 a.m. during a 3-month period. In addition to its GCA radar, Langley has two unmanned navigational aids for instrument approaches and nearby air- fields offer additional aids--including GCA radar--that could be used Dy Langley traffic in an emergency. (See p. 59.) Weather conditions between midnight and 6 a.m. have histori- cally been above minimum operating conditions 95 percent of the time for one of Langley's unmanned approach aids and 98 percent of the time for the other. In comparison, weather conditions have also been above GCA minimum 98 percent of the time. The few wea:her briefings giver. at Langley during the night could be easily obtained by telephone from a nearby FAA flight service station or other military bases. Although Langley serves as a regional w ather office for three bases that operate less than 24 hours a day, it averages less than one briefing a day for these bases between 7 p.m. and 4 a.m. Since these bases receive their briefings by telephone they could just as easily receive them from some other weather facility. Although night staffing of GCA radar, weather, and tran- sient maintenance services is normally light, we estimate that Langley spends at least $70,000 1/ annually for these services. 1/Includes salaries only, not fringe benefits. 58 MILITARY AND CIVILIAN AIRFELDS INTHE NORFOLK, VIRGINIA, AREA PATRICK HENRY AIRPORT FORT 5m1. EUSTISQ-' 6mi. ,LANGLEY % tFB \ AS NORFOLK '6a NORFOLK s Smlt.i REGIONAL AIRPORT N\' \ ~NA, NCEANA FENTRESS 0 NAVAL AUXILLIARY AIRFIELD 59 Norfolk Naval Air Station This air station also provides GCA radar and weather services around the clock but, like Langley, has little need for these services during late night hours. For example, during a 6-week period the air station averaged only eight arrivals or departures a night between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m. About 95 percent of the time between midnight and 8 a.m., weather conditions at the Norfolk air station are within the limits that allow use of the station's unmanned naviga- tional aid. Therefore, most late night flights probably did not need GCA radar. Also, the departing flights could have received their weather briefings from other military and civilian weather offices in the area. About a year befov our review, the station proposed to the Chief of Naval Operations that its GC2A radar system be closed at night due to personnel shortages. In making the proposal, the air station pointed out that weather conditions at night would rarely prohibit use of the field's unmanned approach aid--less than 4 percent of the time, according to our computations. The Commander, Naval Air Atlartic, re- sponded and stated that the interservice support arrangement with the Military Airlift Commaid precluded closing the GCA at night. A review of the agreement by the Naval air station with the Military Airlift Command indicated that operating the GCA on a 24-hour basis was not a required service. Neverthe- less, the Commander, Tactical Wings Atlantic, directed the stations to hold the proposal in abeyance. Consideing the unmanned navigational aids available to the station and the little amount of time the GCA system was needed, the Ftation's proposal to close it at night appears feasible. This station spends more than $40,000 1/ a year in personniel costs to operate its GCA radar and weather services at night. McClellan Air Force Base While McClellan provides various airfield support serv- ices around the clock, the need for the airfield to remain open continuously is questionable. Air traffic is extremely light during the night, and virtually all of the base's users have acknowledged that they could operate satisfactorily if the field were closed at night. For example, one of the users 1/lIncludes salaries only, not fringe benefits. 60 is a rescue and recovery squadron that requires 3 hours leadtime before its aircraft can depart--sufficient time for on-call airfield personnel to report for duty. ACTIONS TO REDUCE AIRPORT ACTIVITIES Although the military services stress self-reliance, this does not mean that each facility has to be self-sufficient. Moreover, the services agree that interservice support is a management technique that should be sought whenever financially advantageous to the Federal Government. Military airports lo- cated near other airports offer the potential for economy by reducing opertions or eliminating marginally needed services. For example, the Army operated at Fort Leavenworth, Kansas, a fully instrumented airfield 16 hours a day, 7 days a week, but the actual number of instrument landings was relatively small. Through coordination with the Kansas City International Airport, the Fort Leavenworth instrument landings are now handled at the Kansas City facility, thereby making possible the reduction of instrumentation and personnel requirements. We noted that, in keeping with DOD policy to reduce re- source expenditures, the Air Force began three separate ac- tions to -- reduce many airfield support services from 24 to 16 hours a day, -- eliminate very high frequency omnidirectional naviga- tion equipment at bases where it is no longer needed, and -- decommission nondirectional radio beacons that are no longer justified. According to the Air Force, the action to decommission the beacons was taken partially as a result of GAO's efforts and could result in annual savings of about $135,000. These are only illustrative of the many airport services that offer potential for consolidation, reduction, or elimination. CONCLUSION Despite recent efforts by the military services, manv airfields provide support services during periods of little or no air traffic. Although our review was limited to only a few of the airfields and services provided, there are numerous services that are operated at night and during other periods of low use which are costly and potentially available from other sources. 61 RECOMMENDATION We recommend that the Secretary of Defense identify and curtail airport services --that are not required because of an insufficient volume of air traffic or -- which can be obtained through arrangements with nearby facilities. AGENCY COMMENTS AND OUR EVALUATION DOD responded to our draft report on November 1, 1976. The Air Force cited its policy which provides for limiting manpower based on the workload involved during reduced periods of activity. In other words, the manpower assigned to night airfield activities should be commensurate with the level of activity. In our view this policy is good if the functions supported are required; however, the necessity to operate, even at a low level, the services described in this report is questionable, particularly when there are alternatives avail- able. The Navy cited the need to maintain the capability to support the combat readiness of each assigned operating avia- tion unit. Nevertheless, the Navy said it will actively pur- sue further curtailments and consolidations consistent with the readiness requirements of their aviation installations. The Navy agrees that it is possible to curtail services at the Norfolk Naval Air Station during late night hours. However, the Navy points out that the station serves as an aerial port for Military Airlift Command flights and invest- ments have been made to establish equipment and facilities in agreement with the Command to support its contract carrier requirements. They feel these factors require that late night hour services be retained. However, with the small volume of traffic and the history of good weather at the Norfolk station described' previously, it is doubtful that the Navy needs to provide GCA radar and weather services dur- ing late night hours on a regular basis when there are un- manned navigational aids available at the air station and weather briefings are available at the FAA flight service station. Moreover, on those infrequent occasions where the weather is below the unmanned navigational aid minimum, there is ample notification of pending arrivals to permit activation of the ground control approach radar. 62 CHAPTER 7 THE NEED FOR EMPHASIS BY TOP-LEVEL MANAGERS The three Government agencies involved in aviation-- Federal Aviation Administration, Defense, and Commerce--need to take action to effectively coordinate their aviation re- quirements. There is presently no method by which these agencies jointly assess their common requirements to achieve more efficient use of the Federal Government's aviation resources. Though FAA is mandated by law to manage the Nation's airspace, it has no proceaures for systematically identify- ing the most economical approach to accomplish this function insofar as it involves the most effective integration of military-civil requirements. If, for example, FAA were to periodically evaluate existing approach control arrangements as described in chapter 3, it would improve its ability to control the use of the Nation's airspace in the most efficient manner. Commerce, in coordination with DOD and FAA, should evaluate the requirements for weather information for the aviation community as a whole to assess essential require- ments and develop new approaches for providing this data with a minimum of overlap. Working together FAA, Commerce, and the military departments could work out ways to rely on each other more extensively; to share all types of aviation support facilities, equipment, and personnel to assure maximum use of scarce resources; and to avoid developing and authorizing un- needed facilities and equipment. Better management of DOD aviation facilities is also essential for more efficient use of existing resources. We also believe that a more extensive integration of military- civil aviation management improves the Nation's total defense capability. We surveyed only a few of the many airport activities supported by the Federal Government. There are a number of other activities which offer potential for achieving savings through interdepartmental coordination. The fact that management officials in the military de- partments have prompted the elimination of some facilities and the consolidation of some functions is indicative of what can be done in the furtherance of econoiry and effectiveness in managing aviation resources. 63 RECOMMENDATION In view of the magnitude of the Government's investment in aviation support functions and the potential to achieve greater efficiency through a coordinated Government effort, GAO recommends that the Administrator of FAA and the Secre- taries of Defense and Commerce support a high level effort within their agencies emphasizing effective planning and co- ordination of aviation requirements. They should emphasize phasize the advantages of interdependence on the supporting capabilities of both the military and civilian community. This includes -- eliminating redundancies between aviation support systems, -- developing a program for eventual standardization of Federal airport functions, particularly navigational aids, and --evaluating support activities in geographical areas having multiple T eral involvement to consolidate support capabilit ..s where possible. AGENCY COMMENTS AND OUR EVALUATION We brought our conclusions and recommendations to the attention of the Secretaries of Defense, Commerce, and Transportation in our August 11, 1976, report. DOD feels that its Advisory Committee on Federal Avia- tion, established to carry out the exchange of information required by the Federal Aviation Act of 1958, has led to significant coordination with FAA and can be used to effect further coordination of the matters described in our report. Transportation agrees that increased emphasis needs to he placed on more effective planning and coordination of aviation requirements among FAA, DOD, and Commerce. The Secretary of Defense also stresses that DOD air- fields are in support of national defense objectives, and the criteria for their operation cannot be the sa;: as that for civil airports. The Secretary of Transportation notes that DOD takes the position that its operation of approach control, landing and navigation facilities, and weather se - ices at military installations is vital to defense needs. 64 As a result, the Secretary does not feel that FAA is in a position to j rle DOD's determination of national defense interests. As we have already stated, we believe that the total military-civil aviation resources are a valuable national resource for both defense and civil requirements. To the extent that the military and civilian personnel operating and using these resources to develop the capacity to relate, interoperate, and cross service, we believe the total avia- tion resources of the Nation will be more efficiently used, and the experience and duplication available to the military through the civil facilities will improve the Nation's defense capabilities. To bring these results about will require top-level management commitment in the agencies involved to provide both the guidance and motivation of operating personnel. 65 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I ASSISTANT SCRETARY OF DEIENSE WASMlINI1, D.C. lSt01 Imam"om AM wSuWR November 1, 1976 Mr. Fred J. Shafer Director, Logistics and Communications Division General Accounting Office Washington, D. C. 20548 Dear Mr. Shafer: This is in reply to your letter of August 11 to Secretary Donald Rumrsfeld transmitting copies of your draft report entitled, "More Effective Use of Aviation Resources ia the United States Can Be Achieved., " OSD Case #4433. Your recommendation that the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Commerce establish a high-level task force to develop procedures for assuring maximum effectiveness anid minimum investment of aviation resources has merit. Within the Department of Defense (DoD) there currently exists an Advisory Committee on Federal Aviation which was established to carry out the exchange of information required by the Federal Aviation Act of 1958. This has led to significant coordination w;tI? the FA '%and can be used to effect further coordinations on such matt,:rs as contained in your draft report. We participate in the procurement of air traffic control systems where there is a common need and it is -ost effective. There are loca- tions where DoD provides air traffic control services to civil aviation and locations where the FAA serves the DoD, as well as several joint- use facilities. We will continue our efforts to achieve efficiency where possible, but it nlust be recognized that the DoD airfields are in support of national defense objectives, and most airfields must be operated 24 hours a day to accomplish a combat readiness or wartime mission. Criteria and standards to authorize support systems fo- DoD airfields cannot be based solely on the number of air traffic ope i.,ons and passenger usage as applied to civil airports. 66 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I Further, DoD manpower must be sufficient to support the most demanding wartime requirements as directed by National Strategies. Specific comments to your report are included in the enclosures. Sincerely, FRANK A SHRONTZ AIlstan Secretary of Defense Enclosures ( Sand Losio) ) s stated 67 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I Department of the Navy Comments on GAO Draft Report of 11 August 1976 on More Effective Use of Aviation Resources in the United States Can Be. Achieved (OSD Case No. 4433)' 1. Summary of GAO findings and recommendations The GAO report presents findings, conclusions, and recommendations concerning possible economies in four support areas related to military and civil aviation. The report notes apparent redundancies between military and civil support functions and recommends further action with the objective of curtailing military airfield operations, consolidating approach control facilities, decommissioning redundant navigation aids, and consolidating aviation weather facilities. Additionally, the report recommends that the Administrator of the FAA, the Secretary of Defense, and the Secretary of Commerce establish a high level task force to identify ways in which the three agencies can plan and coordinate aviation requirements. 2. Summary of Department of the Navy position The Navy has been active in the review of the shorebased aviation support facilities and functions cited in the report and will actively participate or assist in joint military efforts to review the investment in these aviation support functions. Navy reviews of airfield operations and navigation aids have been recent and have resulted in economies in many areas. The nlavy participates in several cooperative efforts with other Departments in the utilization of approach control and weather facilities. It is essential that each aviation installation maintain its capability to support the combat readiness of each of its assigned operating aviation units. Further curtailments and consolidations to achieve economy will be actively pursued, consistent with the requirements for mission readiness of each individual aviation installation. Of particular concern 68 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I is the requirement to maintain the military training of air control and weather perSOnnel. Although there are similarities between the functions performed by these per- sonnel and their civilian counterparts, which may lead to conclusions concerning the ease of consolidation of approach control and weather facilities, the military application of these functions is very specialized and requires that these perso. 1 regularly function in the military environment. Air control and weather personnel are not quickly or easily trained or replaced and a shortage of these personnel when required greatly restricts the capability of air installa- tions or operating units to meet contingency requirements. The elimination of shore duty billets and the resultant effect on retention would further limit the ability of the %Navy to maintain combat -- nd mission readiness. Concerning the specific recommendation to stop the currently proposed construction of a radar approach traffic control facility at MCAS Kaneohe Bay, the program to replace obsolete GCA's at all air installations (including MCAS Kaneohe Bay) will provide adequate radar air control capa- bility, without the need for the proposed construction. With regard to the GAO recommendation to establish a high level task force to develop procedures to assure maximum effectiveness and minimum investment of aviation - resources, the Navy would willingly participate, if requested. 3. Statement a. Chapter 3. Potential for Curtailing Military Airfield Operations Page 22. Finding: Naval Air Station Norfolk...provides ground control approach and weather services around the clock but... has little need for these services during the late night hours. Comment: Although it is possible to curtail night ground .controlled approach and weather services at NAS Norfolk, there are other factors which require these services be retained. By joint directive applicable to the Air Force, the Army, and the Navy, NAS Norfolk has been designated as an Aerial Port and mcst support sustained air movement of personnel and material and serve as an authorized port of entry and departure. Such airfields are designated on the basis of 69 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I being most advantageously located for the distribution of DOD authorized traffic by air, recognizing airlift service requirements as well as economic considerations. Consider- able investment has been made to establish he equipment, facilities (including passenger and cargo terminals), and personnel required to support Military Airlift Command (MAC), MAC contract carrier and Navy logistic missions. Reducing the hours of operation of this important logistic head through airfield closure or diminished aircraft recovery capability could prove costly in terms of world-wide DOD logistics capability. An existing Interservice Support Agreement between NAS Norfolk and the Military Airlift Command (MAC) specifically ,requires 24 hour, seven days per week support, including NAVAIDS, approach facilities and weather services. Commander in Chief, U. S. Atlantic Fleet (CINCLANTFLT) approved this agreement in January 1976 in recognition of NAS Norfolk as the focal point of a major world-wide logistic supply network which is and must be responsive to fleet demands on a 24 hour basis. Cargo processed at NAS Norfolk runs the gamut of the supply system and can be time sensitive, dangerous, expensive or classified. Flights originating or terminating at NAS Norfolk may be constrained by departure or arrival times at origin or destination which are beyond CINCLANTFLT control. This dictates that support facilities must be available for aircraft arrivals and departures. To provide adequate cargo handling and storage facilities at another site if NAS Norfolk were below nonprecision minimums or closed, or incur additional cost in double handling, would be uneconomical and ineffective. Because of its importance as a logistic head, it is inappropriate to restrict NAS Norfolk support services. Page 24. Conclusion: ...many airfields remain operational or provide support services during periods when there is little or no air traffic... Recommendati.on: ...the Secretary of Defense take action to identify and curtail airport functions and services--that are not required... Comment: Navy policy specifically encourages Commanding Officers to seek permission to reduce airfield (and airfield services) operating hours whenever possible to achieve economy. This policy has resulted in significant reductions in airfield 70 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I operating hours for 39 naval air installations and restricted hours of availability for transient aircraft maintenance for 44 naval air installations. These reductions reflect the results of previour actions to crixtail airfield operations. The Navy will crntinue to emphas;ize the curtailment of airport services where economies can be achieved, which do not result in lower mission or combat readiness of the installation or its critical personnel. b. Chapter 4. Potential for Consolidating Approach Control Facilities Page ii, Page 33. Findinn: ...the military services and FAA independently operating radar approach control facilities to manage airspace bordering on another even though each facility could have the capability to manage the total assigned airspace. (NAS Oceana and NAS Lemoore) ,unent: The Navy should continue to operate the approach contrl-facilities at NAS Oceana and NAS Lepnoore. Navy policy regarding operation of approach control facilities is based on the Memorandum of Agreement (i.OA) executed on 2 June 1969 between the Departments of Transportation, Army, Navy, and Air Force. tinder the terms of this MOA and pursuant to the Federal Aviation Act of 1958, where the FAA and military mutually agree, the approach control authority for the military terminal area will be delegated to the military. Unless agreed to the contrary: where a military facility is located near an FAA approac.. control facility, the FAA will perform the approach control function. Approach control service should be provided by the Navy at Naval Air Stations with a large volume of 1 gh performance air traffic which does not require integration with civil air traffic. This service should also be provided by the Navy at sufficient locations to insure the combat readiness of an adequate number of shorebased Navy air con- trollers. The Navy operation of the approach controls at NAS Oceana and NAS Lemoore is in accordance with this rationale and the MOA. Without provisions for additional facilities and personnel, neither NAS Oceana or NAS Lemoore nor the FAA approach controls at Fresno and Ncrfolk have the capability to manage the total assigned airspace. Consolidating the NAS Oceana approach control with tle FAA's approach control at Norfolk Regional Airport, is possible but not recommended. The addition of more than 150,000 annual operations generated by NAS Oceana would require the FAA to make significant investments *in equipment and training to insure an equivalent level of safety and responsiveness to tactical aircraft operations. In the Norfolk area, Navy air 71 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I traffic predominates. Because NAS Oceana is located east of civil airways and directly adjacent to the offshore operating areas, ninety percent of NAS Oceana's air traffic remains entirely under that facility's approach control ,'"thority. This greatly facilitates the quick response capability required for fleet training effectiveness, reduces operating costs through the use of military handling procedures, and simplifies the control of other aircraft, both civil and military, operating in the Norfolk area. NAS Oceana air traffic is often continued through the night in response to fleet training requirements. In addition to providing the responsiveness required to support fl.et carrier aviation, the NAS Oceana facility is the single radar approach control %faci.itJ available to Commander Naval Air Forces, U. S. Ptlantic Fleet, witil sufficient air traffic volume to train naval air traffic controllers 1n an environment simulating that enco ntered at sea. Consolidating San Joaquin Valley approach control require- ments with the Navy at NAS Lemoore ms a means of achieving savings ,gas studied by the FAA in 1971. This study identii.ed the Navy as the predominant usar for the approach control services then provided by th.a FAA from this naval f; '.lity. Thi/ study resulted in the relocation of these FAA personnel tr the smaller Fresno approach control facility. The personnel zosts incurred in support of naval requirements were a signifi- cant factor in this decision. After the departure of the FAA from NAS Lemoore the Navy assumed approach ccntrol responsi- bility at that station. The facility now provides the Commander Naval Air Force, U. S. Pacilic Fleet with a radar approach oontrol capability suitable for training naval a.r traffic controllers in a simulated carrier environment. The NAS Lemoore facility has been upgraded since the FAA's departure in order to support the large volume of air traffic and meet fleet pilot and controller training nerds The facility is no longer adequate in si:e or equipment so absorb FAA personnel and would require significant facility expansion to fulfill the GAO proposal. During CY 1975 the Fresno facility handled 61,084 operations while the Navy handled 254,818 operations at NAS LP moore. (See GAO note 1, p. 85.) 72 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I (See GAO note 1, p. 85.) Page 40. Recommendation: ...Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, in coordination with Secretary of Defense, establish procedures for evaluating the potential of consoli- dating the management of adjacent...airspace... Comment: In keeping with the previously cited MOA and Navy requirements to exercise approach control authority for purposes of training and readiness, the Navy will actively participate in future evaluations of the potential of consoli- dating airspace management, as requested. (See GAO note 1, p. 85.) Page 54. Finding: Redundant precision NAVAIDS. (Automatic 'IAding System (ACLS) and Precision Approach Radar (PAR)) Comment: ACLS was installed ashore to provide simulated carrier approach training on one runway at each of the five Master jet hases. ACLS systems have not yet been authorized as shorebas d instrument landing systems, however, the Navy is presently reviewing ACLS to determine its suitability as a shorebased landing system. Of concern are indications of shortened range in heavy percipitation and erratic signal return frct non-ACtS equipped aircraft when used in a talk- dowy :_ode. Further, material support levels necessary to 73 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I permit full reliance upon the system ashore are being determined. Upon completion of this review and upon the establishment of all-runway capability at each of the five locations the Navy intends to thoroughly explore the feasi- bility of eliminating PAR at those locations. (See GAO note 1, p. 85.) Page 61.a Conclusion: Military and civilian aviation administrators have not established effective procedures for coordinating their navigational aid equipment requirements. Comment: Although lack of coordination in the past may have contributed to the present wide variety of navigational aids, recent coordination between DOD and FAA on next- generation navigational aids is well organized and productive. She continuing dialogue on the Global Positi.oning System (GPS) and the National Microwave Le-ding System (NMLS) is expected to result in development of systems which fully nfeet both civil and militdry needs and reduce the number of systems in use. 74 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I Page 61.a Conclusion: The Department of Defense is not controlling the authorization and use of navigational aids to avoid duplication and assure use only where there is a valid require- Comment: Periodic reviews such as those conducted on the MD"-by the Navy in 1974 are accomplished to eliminate unnecessary duplication. A review of potentially redundant MTAN installations was completed in 1975 and at present, requirements for airport surveillance radar (ASR) are being reviewed to eliminate duplicate installations. Military requirements of each service, including coordination of mission. equipment, location, and need must be considered in the formu- lation of requirements for navigation aids. The Navy has established procedures within the Naval Air Traffic Control, Air Navigational Aids, and Landing Systems (NAALS) Program during the last year to insure comprehensive management of these equipments. Page 61.a Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense and the Federal AViation Adnistration establish effective procedures to coordinate and avoid the proliferation of redundant equipment. Recommendation: The Secretary of Defense develop effective criteria and standards for the authorization and use of naviga-. tional aid systems at military airfields. Conummnt: The Navy -oncurs %ith the need to avoid ths proliferation of redundant equipment and will actively partici- pate in the establishment of procedures and standards as requested. Page 61.a Reccnrendatior: The Secretary should also take action to deaco.iiion those redundant navigational aid systems... Comment: This recommendation is fully supported and as nated above, the Navy has a continuing program of reevaluation to determine excessive redundancy and will vigorously pursue saih action in the future. d. Chapter 6. Consolidation of Aviation Weather Facilities is Feasible Page 70. 75 APPENDIX I APPENDTX I Pinding: Navy weather stations near a Federal Aviation Administrationr Flight Service Station. Comment: Navy Weather Environmental Support Detachments (NWSE5T-TAA Flight Service Stations (FSS), and National Weather Service Forecast Offices (WSFO) perform dissimilar functions. FAA pilot weather briefers are not authorized to provide forecasts, but make local observations and provide pilots with current and forecast aviation weather provided by WSFO's. WSFO personnel provide a range of weather products, including aviation forecasts, to FSS's and NWSED's. The responsibilities of the NWSED at a naval aviation instal- lation are considerably broader than those of the FSS. In 'addition to airways weather, the NWSED provides several environmental data needs unique to naval missions not readily available from an FSS or a WSFO, related to ocean acoustic propagatir-, atmospheric refractivity, magnetics, ballistics, etc. To Dfectively provide these weather needs, naval weather personnel require specialized training beyond that provided for FSS personnel. To insure technical proficiency and shore assignment opportunity for these. skilled personnel it is essential that they function regularly in the military weather environment, Although the Navy has examined the possible consolidation of weather service functions at certain adjacent naval air installations, such consolidations, if accomplished, would require the resolution of problems relatea to prowiding graphic weather depictions, automated flight plans, classified weather briefs, and shipboard training requirements" from one station to .another. Although NAS Norfolk and NTS Oceana are proximate, there is a high degree of variability in actual weather experienced, particularly in marginal situations. NAS Norfolk provides 61,000 briefings per year. RAS Ocerna provides 26,000 briefingF per year. Because of this high volume consolidation of these facilities appears economica.ly disadvantageous. Pa"s 9. Coaclusion: ...a lucrative opportunity for the Depart- *mentsoFiDef-ense and C^mmerce and the FJa to pool resources... to enhance efficiency ;.d economy. Comnt: The Navy agrees that opportunities exist for exchanging airways weather information with certain civil activities and tactical weather information with certain military activities, in locations where the nature of supported military aviation operations permits. The Navy agrees that observations should be made by Navy weather personnel at each 76 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I be achieved, station. Although further consolidation may require- the general in certain cases at certain locations, of the ment for observation and forecasting capabilities be maintained. NWSED's at each naval air installation, must At the present time, extensive cooperative efforts are naval air facili- already in being. A total of 17 domestic remote receive or provide ties (and others overseas) eithe£ others are being considered aviation weather support, and of lrmy, for it. Current arrangementb include participation Corps, civil Air Force, Coast Guard, Treasury, FAA, Marine Wavy and state government Lem:ents, as well as other placed activities. The environmental support requirementsprovide ,upon the NWSED's are such that they can generally increased needed support to other agencies, but, without environ- personnel education and training and an expanded the reverse is not true. Exanpies of mental data base, Fleet Navy's special inter-agency cooperation include the Weather Service Weather Central in Hawaii where two National and the adapting personnel assist in computer programming National Weather Service in of Navy products for use by the the Navy Fleet the Pacific area. At Suitland, Maryland, operational sea ice analyses to Weather Facility provides National NOAA and also backup communications for the to consoli- Meteorological Center. The Navy will continue but primary lavy date weather support where practical, fleet environ- provision of concerns must include the adequate and classifica- mental support, aviation weather capability, of which may be tion of certa.n naval operations, the nature revealed through weather information. Page 79. Recommendation: ...The Secretary of Commerce direct the and Support Federal Coordinator for Meteorological Services Research to review in coordination with the Secretaries of Defense and Transportation the aviation weather requirements (I the military and civilian communities. of federal weather Comment: Coordination and review in activities has been quite productive the past. There is future. The every indication that this will continue in the of military tIavy will actively participate in future' reviews and civilian weacher requirements, as requested. 77 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE COMMENTS/ERRATA ITEMS ON GAO DRAFT REPORT, "MORE EFFECTIVE USE OF AVIATION RESOURCES IN THE UNITED STATES CAN BE ACHIEVED" (OSD CASE NO. 4433) Page 8: Reference lines four, five, and six, which refer to isolation of mi.itary facilities. The Air Force has worked with the FAA over tte years to consolidate air traffic control services to support the civil and Air Force communities, when such consolida- tion proved to be safe and economical. The result is that the FPAP provides approach control service at 41 Air rorce bases, while 38 Air Force approach controls serve some 119 satellite civil airports. The remoteness of many Air Force airfields require that they function in isolation. The Air Force is willing to absist the FAA in developing further consolidation of approach control facilities, if such studies would prove to be more safe and economical, and at the same time insure national defense commitments are met., Page 191 A.eference first paragraph that- states Transient Maintenance manpower is provided for night shift operation even though there are no transient landings. It is Air Force policy to provide manpower based on either workload or wartime require- ments, whichever is higher. For transient maintenance, transient landings constitute the majority of workloads. The manhours of actual workload determine the manpower required. The Air Force does not authorize Transieint Maintenonce manpower solely on the basis of airfield operating hours, although minimum manning may occasionally, be warranted due to team size requirements and the low number of Transient landings 3xperien.ced at a specific location. Shift requirements must necestarily be determined by local base management officials lue i-.transient landing demands. However, these shift requirements are taken from the manpower earned from the actual number of landings. Page 24: Reference recommendation that the Secretary of Defense take action to identify and curtail airport functions and servicpi. Recommendation has been previously implGmbntJd by the Air Fcrce. Reduction of airfield operating hours has been a continuing 78 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I project since 1972; since then, 37 bases have reduced various support functions from 24 hours a day to 16 hours or less. While volume of air traffic is a reasonable criteria for determining operating hours of civil facilities, it is essential that operating hours for military air traffic control facilities be adequate to support the base mission. The Air Force is continuously striving to consolidate func- tions and reduce hours in the interest of cost savings, but the requirements to maintain a specified defense posture must take priority. Page 36: Reference paragraph one and two, referring to merger of approach control operations in the Central Valley of California. The consolidation of facilities does, in some cases, permit more efficient use of airspace and resources. However, any consolidation of specific facilities must resvlt frc'm a detailed evaluation at the local level. This evaluatinn rmust consider services required, radar/communications coverage, tiraffic volume and flow, space and equipment availability, etc. The Travis/McClellan and Castle/Lemocre recommended consolida- tions are not the result of such an evaluation, In the case of Travis/McClellan, an official at FAA Headquarters stated that this consolidation had been considered several times in the past and rejected each time as too cumberscme. (See GAO note 1, p. 85.) Although the consolidations mentioned in the report, as well as others, may be possible, the economics and operational advantages alluded to must be regarded as suspect until validated by the detailed evaluation process. The Air Force is willing to partici- pate in any evaluation pertaining to the consolidation of the above facilities. Page 40: Rnference recommendation pertaining to consolidating approach controls. The Air Force concurs with the recommendation that the Administrator of the Federal Aviation Administration, in coordination with the Secretary of Defense, establish proce- dures for evaluating the potential for consolidating the management of adjacent approach/departure airspace and take action to consolidate where practical. Although this report 79 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I seems to "zero in" on adjacent civil/military and military/ military facilities and airspace, the evaluation procedures should address not only these, but the civil/civil situation. Because of the large number of civil facilities, the potential consolidation savings could be significant. The Air Force must be very cautious when studying consolida- tions, to insure that we do not become overly committed to a CONUS civilian controller force for the following reasons: (a) The Air Force has no control over a civil force; (5) The civil air traffic controllers are unionized and can participate in "job actions", which could preclude us from accomplishing our training mission; (c) The Air Force \ must maintain an adequate, weMl-trained CONUS controller force and appropriate facilities to insure that we can support all contingency and combat situations; and (d) The civilian cont-oller force cannot be committed to the combat or c¢,ntin- gency situation. Page 47: Reference the second paragraph regarding the need for standardization of civil and military equipments. The VKF omnidirectional range (VOR) and Tactical Air Naviga- tion (TACAN) were not simultaneous developments. The TACAN followed the VOR for several significant reasons. The -OR could not satisfy military tactical/mobility requirements because of siting problems, it is unreliable for seaborne forces, saturation of the Very High Frequency (VHF) Spectrum prohibited expansion of the VOR to meet navigational aid requirements, and the VOR did not provide distance measuring equipment (DME). Page 48: Reference first paragraph which states 81 Air Force and three other military installations, etc. The Air Force maintains 32 VHF omnidirectional ranges (VOR), of which 19 are for support of T-37 operational requirements. Page 51: Reference first paragraph referring to adjusting the instrument landing system (ILS) renovation schedule. There is an urgent need to replace the old tube type ILS's because of their age and lack of a capability to provide 80 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I logistical support beyond calendar year 1977. These ILS's are being installed on the primary instrument runways. Secondly, one of the major controlling factors for removal of the precision approach radars (PAR) is the aircraft avionics. The PARs will be required until the installation of the ILS receivers in all of the aircraft, which is not expected to be complete until 1980. (See GAO note 1, p. 85.) Page 58: Reference line five referring to one command listing 81 Air Force installations requiring the VHF omnidirectional range (VOR) capability. It should be noted that the Air Force only maintains 19 VORs for the primary support of the T-37 t:aininq aircraft. Page 61: Reference second paragrap!h referring to the nondirectional beacons (NDBs). The Air Force will operate approximately 40 NDBs after January 1977, of which only three will be in the' CONUS. Air Force requirements for these beacons are primarily for operation in the Arctic regions and other remote areas. As long as the Air Force mission requires operations in these areas, the NDBs will be required. Air crews must maintain proficiency in the use of this navigational aid to respond to worldwide contingencies. Page 61a: Reference recommendations. The Air Force will be happy to meet with the Federal Aviation Administrator (FAA) to further improve and refine present coordination procedures on support requirements. standardization of equipment, and eliminate redundancy, if any. There are several factors that 61 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I must be recognized. First, the Air Force operates airfields in support of the national defense and must maintain naviga- and recover forces in all tional aids necessary to launch Air Force cannot establish criteria weather conditions. The that used by the civil community, i.e., and standards such as of passengers the number of arrivals and departures, the number enplaning and deplaning. It should be noted that the Air Force two years, attempt- has been negotiating with the FAA for almost the Air ing to get the necessary landing aids to support hosted by civil airports that do not National Guard forces Secondly, meet FAA navigational aid establishment criteria. aids for training the Air Force must maintain some navigational combat environment, only - those that may be used in a and other contingencies. (See GAO note 1, p. 85.) to decommission naviga- The Air Force w1ll continue its program necessary. This tional aid systlcms that are not absolutely ¢'f over forty program has resulted in the decommissioning There is a navigational aids within the past 12 months. navigational aids and those distinction between redundant are navigational aids aids "rarely used." Similar There sometimes located in close geographical proximity. airfield, and any may be a mixture of landing aids at a given This situation two of the aids may provide like capabilities. Requirements does not necessarily mean there is redundancy. in assigned aircraft, are determined based on mission, avionics aids and training requirements. The siting of navigational is extremely to obtain the lowest weather landing minimums reach a geograph- to critical. A navigational aid may be used ical area in which several airfields are located, but it approaches to the normally cannot be sited to provide landing within that area. multiple runways serving all the airfields Page 77: base organizations Reference last paragraph referring t. other observer function. Do not concur being tasked to perform the observations should be with the recommendation that weather 82 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I made by tower controllers or other on base personnel. As stated by the GAO, the concept of tower operators tb:ing surface weather observations was thoroughly studiej in 1975. It was originally estimated that a manpower savings of 155 spaces would result; however, the study results showed only a 54 space savings. The study stated, "consolidation of surface weather observing and tower controller duties are no longer considered valid. (See GAO note 1, p. 85.) Further, it is not practical for other base personnel to make weather observations for the same rationale as the tower people. Page 79: Refereice recommendation to eliminate redundancy and consoliuate functions. Agree with the recommendation that the three regions identified in the report (Norfolk, Sacramento, and Honolulu), and others of a similar nature, should be examined for potential savings of'weather resources. The Air Force will continue to work to conserve its weather resources, and with other agencies to avoid unnecessary duplication. Presently the Air Force is embarked on an orderly program to make its weather service more efficient. The initial step was to combine the weather forecaster and observer career fields. The change is well along, the necessary t-aining is being accomplished with little personnel tu-b-lence, and the program will be completed by 1980. The next step, now being readied by MAJCOM planners for Air Staff evaluation, is a multiphased effort to automate the weather sensors and short range ter-ir.al forecasts to the degree possible. This program is similar to FAA and National Weather Service (NWS) plans and will use their development experience and instrumentation to the degree possible. Full operation of this program is expected in the mid-80s. Costs of these programs will be offset by officer to enlisted conversions and significant manpower reductions. In the meantime, other efforts are underway to conserve manpower associated with the weather service: (.) The expected transfer of weather rmintenance people to the Air Force Communications Service will produce savings. 83 APPENDIX I APPENDIX I (2) A MNlitary Airlift Command review of all Weather Service functions was just completed which resulted in an across the board reduction in weather manpower. Further reductions of this nature do not appear feasible. (3) Reduced services at Richards-Gebaur AFB are now being staffed by Headquarters AFCS. (4) Tbhe FAA plan to modernize its FAA System offers an opportunity to provide more remote weather services, be watched by the Air Force to realize economics whereand will Possible. It is pertinent to state that in 1973 and 1974, tests were conducted respectively in the San Antonio and San Bernardino areas to determine if an around-the-clock remote forecast service would be adequate. The goal was to reduce manpower. Results of these tests showed degraded terminal forecasts services, and recommended that on-base face-to-face serviceand be reestablished (which it was). H't ver, the tests "that remote briefings to aircrews "re adequate, if gooddid reveal nications were available, the cre 4 s educatqd, and the commu- briefings were standardized." The primary objective for the operation of Air Force base weather services is to serve the facility during the period a majority of the aircrew activity takes place. During periods of low activity and when the base is closed for flying, the residual weather service is limited to what essential for resource protection. The occasional need is for a briefing, and all the forecast requirements are essentially handled from a designated remote location. These programs are described in Air Force Weather Service (AWS) Regulations 105-21 and 105-28. Most of the designated reote facilities must operate around-the-clock mission demands, e.g., facilities which support because the of force. SAC alert Air Force meteorologists might augment the Flight Service Station (FSS); however, this would add a new function to the facility--forecasting. In such an arrangement, terminal forecasts, weathor warning, and briefings could be provided. However, this arrangement would duplicate the inbeing remote forecast system and could result in additional manpower costs. 84 APPENDIYX APPENDIX I economies by There may be an opportunity to derive manpowerinto the National either integrating Air Force forecasters arrangements Weather Service (NWS), or by interdepartmental with NWS. Since remote service is now provided during slack savings could only be made during the normal periods, manpower these periods, it is base flying hours. However, luring standard Air Force procedure to: so operations (1) Give real time weather assistance of flying periods. people can make cost effective use that Air Force (2) Provide for safety of flight. Note to airline personnel are relatively inexperienced compared people. skilled (forecast-t.er/ The program to make weather NCOs dual manpower. reduce weather station Since the observer) will specialist to observe Air Force requires an on-the-spot flying, this same environmental conditions during active period forecasts. dual skilled specialist can make the short if a NWS facility There would be additional manpower cost was also responsible for the same forecast% Page 81: high level task Reference the GAO recommendation that a aviation require- force be established to plan and coordinate ments to include, for example, the evaluation of support in geographical areas having multiple Federal activities where possible. involvement to consolidate support capabilities (initiated in 1968) to However, the DOD has an ongoing program property operations real evaluate such support as it pertains to to eliminate/ and maintenance. Therefore, any initiatives facilities should complement the consolidate aviation support savings might accrue current DOD efforts. Although manpower military from impl -I.-tion of the GAO recommendation, such in the affected reductions .nu,. not reduce the Air Force specialti 'ow the level required to support the National readiness. Strategy c. a-dversely impact operational GAO notes. 1. Portions of this letter have been deleted the because they are no longer relevant to matters discussed in this report. may not cor- 2. Page references in this appendix respond to pages of this final report. 85 APPENDIX II APPENDIX II OFFICE OF THE SECRETARY OF TRANSPORTATION WASHINGTON, D.C. 20590 . bomber 9, 1976 Nr. Henry Eschwege Director Cowmunity and Economic Development Division U. S. General Accounting Office Washington, D. C. 20548 Dear Vr. Eschwege: This is inresponse to your letter of August 11, 1976, requesting comments from the Department of Transportation on the General Accounting Office draft report entitled "More Effective Use of Aviation Resources in the United States Can Be Achieved," dated July 1976. We have reviewed the report in detail and prepared a Department as Transportation reply. Two copies of the reply are enclosed. Sincerely, William S. Heffelfiger Enclosures APPENDIX II A 4'PENDIX II Enclosure DEPARTMENT IF TRANSPORTATION REPLY TO GAO DRAFT REPORT OF JULY 1976 ON MORE EFFECTIVE USE OF AVIATION RESOURCES IN THE UNITED STATES CAN bE ACHIEVED SUMMARY OF GAO FINDINGS AND RECOII4ENDATIONS The General Accounting Office (GAO) states that many military and civil airports duplicate capabilities, functions and facilities. As a result, a potential for consolidation and/or elimination of unnecessary Government investment exists. The GAO found that there is no effective procedure for civil agencies and the militazy on a collective basis to systematically review requirements for the development and continued operation of aviation support functions. Examples cited by t'he GAO were: (1) the military services and the Federal Aviation Atministration (FAA) are each independently operating radar approach control facilities to manage airspace bordering one another even though each facility individually has the capability to manage the total assigned airspace, (2) the military aLd the FAA are independently developing redundant navigational aids, and the military maintains unnecessary navigational equipment, (3) the Department of Defense (DOD), the FAA and the Department of Comrce are not reviewing the potential to shbare facilities and capabilities of their respective weather activities in close geographical proximity to each other, and (4) military airfields are operating and/or providing support services during periods when there is virtually little or no air traffic. The GAO recommends that the FAA, DOD, and the Secretary of Commerce establish a high-level task force to identify ways in which the three agencies can plan and coordinate aviation requirements to assure maimnum effectiveness and minimum investment and to take advantage of the supporting capabilities of both the military and civilian aviation community. For the specific functions reviewed by the GAO, it recoumends that (1) the FAA and DOD establish the means for consolidating approach control facilities where feasible, (2) the FAA and DOD coordinate and standardize equipment requirements, (3) the Secretary of Commerce direct the Federal Coordinator for Isteorological Services and Supporting Research to review, in coordination with the )OD and the Secr.etarv cf Transportati.n. t-. aviation veathr requirements of the military and civilian co=nRrities to identify and eliminate redundant capabilities, (4) the DOD Ldentify and curtail unneeded airfield operations, develop 87 APPENDIX II APPENDIX II eafective criteria and standards for the authorization and vuse of aavigational aid systems at military airfields, and deccmaisvion redundant systems, and (5) the Secretary of the Navy step the currently proposed construction of a radar approach traffic control facility at Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii and instead use one of the available alternatives. DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION POSITION ON GAO RECOMMENDATIONS We agree that increased emphasis needs to be placed on more effective planning and coordination of aviation requirements among FAA, DOD, and Cor.'srca. However, we do not believe that the GAO recommendatir- to eusL~blish yet another high-level task force is an appropriate soluti2n. We feel that the problems witch GAO identifies in its 'eport can be effectively dealt with through existing mechanisms, such a: (1) the DOD Advisory Committee on Federal AviAtion which reports on DOD requirements in aviation matters; (2) the recently issued Air Force Traffic Control and Landing Systems Plan which is intended to provide FAA with the data necessary for the development of equipment comon to both civil and military air traffic ;cntrol; (3) the Joint FAA/DOD Review Group's efforts to improve safety of operations and reduction of the midair collision potential; and (4) various other FAA and DOD coordination efforts, both formal and informal, to work together jointly to ensure that the National Aviation System meets civil and military aviation needs. It should be pointed out that DOD has historically taken the position that at many locations military provision of approach control, landing and navigation facilities, and weather services is vital to defense needs. We do not feel that the FAA is in a position to make Judgments on matters involving the determination of national defense interests by the DOD. (See GAO note.) Acting uty Administrator GAO note: This portion of the letter has been deleted because it is no longer relevant to the matters discussed in this report. 88 APPENDIX III APPENDIX III ( ' IUNITED STATES DEPARTMENT OF COMMERCE Nationsl Oceanic and AtmospherEc Administration Rockviile. Md. 20052 W116/SJL September 15, 1976 Mr. Henry Eechwege Director, Co.amunity and Lconomic Development Division U.S. General Accounting Office Washington, D.C. 20548 Thank you for the opportunity to review and comment on the draft report, "More Effective Use of Aviation Resources in tha Ur,ted States Can Be Achieved." Iy comments are restricted to Chapter 6, "Consolidation of Aviation Weather Facilities is Feasible," and Chapter 7, "The Need for Emphasis by Top Level Managers." I concur with the recommendations set forth on pages 79 and 81, and an willing to work with the Departments of Defense and Transportation to achieve further f'nrovements in economy and efficiency in the provision of weather services. Because of the existence of the Federal Aviation Adminis- tration (FAA) long range plan for modernization of the Plight Service System and for other reasons, the Federal Coordinator for Meteorological Services and Supporting lasearch has begun to consider problems pertaining to aviation weather service involving the National Weather Service and the FAA. The advent of this GAO Report provides the basis for a natural extension of these considerations to include the Department of Defense. Sincerely, White dihnigstrator APPENDIX IV APPENDIX IV PRINCIPAL OFFICIALS RESPONSIBLE FOR ADMINISTERING ACTIVITIES DISCUSSED IN THIS REPORT Tenure of office From To DEPARTMENT OF DEFENSE SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: Dr. Harold Brown Jan. 1977 Present Donald H. Rumsfeld Nov. 1975 Jan. 1977 James R. Schlesinger July 1973 Nov. 1975 William P. Clements, Jr. (acting) Apr. 1973 July 1973 DEPUTY SECRETARY OF DEFENSE: Charles W. Duncan, Jr. Jan. 1977 Present William P. Clements, Jr. Jan. 1973 Jan. 1977 ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE (INSTALLATIONS AND LOGISTICS): Dale R. Babione (acting) Jan. 1977 Present Frank A. Shrontz Feb. 1976 Jan. 1977 John J. Bennett (acting) Mar. 1975 Present Arthur I. Mendolia June 1973 Mar. 1975 ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF DEFENSE (COMPTROLLER): Fred P. Wacker Sept. 1976 Present Terence E. McClary June 1973 Aug. 1976 DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: Martin R. Hoffman Aug. 1975 Present Howard H. Callaway July 1973 Aug. 1.975 90 APPENDIX IV APPENDIX IV Tenure of office From To DEPARTMENT OF THE ARMY (continued) UNDER SECRETARY OF THE ARMY: Vacant Jan. 1977 Present Norman R. Augustine May 1975 Jan. 1977 Vacant Apr. 1975 May 1975 Herman R. Staudt Oct. 1973 Apr. 1975 ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE ARMY (INSTALLATIONS AND LOGISTICS): Edwin Greiner (acting) Dec. 1976 Present Harold L. Brownman Oct. 1974 Dec. 1976 Edwin Greiner Aug. 1974 Oct. 1974 Edwin Greiner (acting) May 1974 Aug. 1974 Vincent P. Huggard (acting) Apr. 1973 May 1974 CONTROLLER OF THE ARMY: Lt. Gen. John A. Kjellstrom July 1974 Present Lt. Gen. E. M. Flanagan, Jr. Jan. 1973 July 1974 DEPARTMENT OF THE NAVY SECRETARY OF THE NAVY: Gary D. Penisten (acting) Feb. 1977 Present Joseph T. McCullum Feb. 1977 Feb. 1977 David R. MacDonald Jan. 1977 Feb. 1977 J. William Middendorf June 1974 Jan. 1977 J. William Middendorf (acting) Apr. 1974 June 1974 John W. Warner (acting) May 1972 Apr. 1974 UNDER SECRETARY OF THE NAVY: Vacant Feb. 1977 Present David R. MacDonald Sept. 1976 Feb. 1977 John Bowers (acting) July 1976 Aug. 1976 Vacant Mar. 1976 June 1976 David S, Potter Aug. 1974 Mar. 1976 Vacant June 1974 Aug. 1974 J. William Middendorf June 1973 June 1974 91 APPENDIX IV APPENDIX IV Tenure of office From To DEPARTMENT OF THE AIR FORCE SECRETARY OF THE AIR FORCE: Thomas C. Reed Jan. 1976 Present James W. Plummet (acting) Nov. 1975 Jan. 1976 Dr. John L. McLucas July 1973 Nov. 1975 ASSISTANT SECRETARY OF THE AIR FORCE (INSTALLATIONS AND LOGISTICS): Richard J. Keegan (acting) Feb. 1977 Present Hon. J. Gordon Kapp Mar. 1976 Jan. 1977 Frank A. Shrontz Oct. 1973 Feb. 1976 Richard J. Keegan (acting) Aug. 1973 Oct. 1973 Lewis E. Turner Jan. 1973 Aug. 1973 COMPTROLLER OF THE AIR FORCE: Lt. Gen. Charles G. Buckingham Sept. 1975 Present Lt. Gen. J. R. DeLuca Oct. 1973 Sept. 1975 Lt. Gen. D. L. Crow Apr. 1969 Oct. 1973 DEPARTMENT OF TRANSPORTATION SECRETARY OF TRANSPORTATION: Brock Adams Jan. 1977 P:esent William T. Coleman, Jr. Mar. 1975 Jan. 1977 John T. Barnum (acting) Feb. 1975 Mar. 1975 Claude S. Brinegar Feb. 1973 Feb. 1.975 FEDERAL AVIATION ADMINISTRATION ADMINISTRATOR: John L. McLucas Nov. 1975 Present James E. Dow (acting) Apr. 1975 Nov. 1973 Alexander P. Butterfield Mar. 1973 Mar. 1975 92 APPENDIX IV APPENDIX TV Tenure of office From To DEPARTMENT Oi COMMERCE Jan. 1977 Present SECRETARY OF COMMERCE: Jan. 1977 Present Juanita M. Kreps Feb. 1976 Jan. 1977 Elliott L. Richardion Feb. 1976 May 1975 Rogers C. B. Morton Mar. 1975 Apr. 1975 John F. Tabor (acting) Feb. 1973 Feb. 1975 Frederick B. Dent SERVICES FEDERAL COORDINATOR FOR METEROLOGICAL AND SUPPORTING RESEARCH June 1975 Present Dr. Edward S. Epstein July 1973 Dec. 1975 Dr. Clayton E. Jensen 93
Using Aviation Resources in the United States More Efficiently
Published by the Government Accountability Office on 1977-03-31.
Below is a raw (and likely hideous) rendition of the original report. (PDF)