Claims More Than 1,800 Controllers Hired
The Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) announced Friday the
agency exceeded its air traffic controller staffing targets for the
fiscal year that ended on September 30, by hiring more than 1,800
controllers during the year. That tops the 2006 year-end total by
256 controllers; As a result, the agency now employs 14,874
"We’re getting a lot of enthusiastic new recruits who are
interested in becoming air traffic controllers," said Acting
Administrator Bobby Sturgell. "Controller hiring, training and
staffing is a major priority and we are on track to meet future
The FAA will hire and train more than 15,000 controllers over
the next decade to replace controllers who are expected to retire,
those who are promoted, and those who leave for other reasons. The
agency’s detailed controller workforce plan maps out
projected retirement numbers through 2016 and target numbers for
the end of each fiscal year.
FY2007 was the peak year for controllers who were hired in the
early 1980s to become eligible for retirement for the first time.
During the year, 828 controllers retired, and the agency expects
retirements to continue to increase every year through 2012. The
controller workforce plan calls for a steady increase in the total
number of air traffic controllers through 2016 for a total of more
than 16,000 controllers.
During fiscal year 2007, the FAA hired 1,815 new controllers.
They included people with prior FAA or Department of Defense air
traffic control experience, students who successfully completed a
program of study as part of the FAA’s collegiate training
initiative, and qualified applicants recruited through job
The FAA says a controller hired in 2007 will make an average of
nearly $50,000 in cash compensation -- including base salary,
locality and premiums -- by the end of their first year. By the end
of the fifth year, average compensation is $94,000. The FAA also
pays new hires while they are in training, as well as for training