The U.S. Department of Transportation’s (DOT) inspector general (IG) released a report Oct. 1 (dated for Sept. 13) saying "weakness" in FAA's program and contract management of En Route Automation Modernization (ERAM), a key enabling technology for NextGen, is to blame for ERAM's schedule slips and cost overruns that could reach $500 million.
That figure is based on a 2010 MITRE report with a cost overrun range between $170 million and $500 million; FAA's estimates sit at the midpoint of approx. $300 million.
Though the IG notes that ERAM is "on a much stronger footing now than when we began our review," continuing delays in ERAM "pose significant risks to other critical NextGen initiatives." Aviation watchers know all too well that NextGen will be threatened too by sequestration, amplifying the importance of the audit.
“The FAA has a new strategy in place for ERAM that is advancing the technology to deliver it on time and on budget,” an FAA spokesperson told POLITICO. “Over the last year, changes have been made to program oversight, contract management and the implementation approach that have delivered significant progress in deployment of this technology.”
The full report can be read here. http://1.usa.gov/P6LyE8