FAA Shutdown Ends
On August 5, the Senate ended a two-week partial closure of the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) by clearing the 21st extension of VISION 100, the 2003 law providing the agency its operating authority.The Senate approved the House-backed extension (H.R. 2553), by unanimous consent. H.R. 2253 restores agency operating and funding authority through Sept. 16 and contains controversial provisions denying Essential Air Service (EAS)funding to certain rural airports. As part of the agreement, the Obama administration has agreed to waive the EAS subsidy reductions for most of the airports impacted by the cuts.Congress’ dysfunction cost the agency roughly $420 million in lost aviation tax revenue. The FAA had furloughed 4,000 of its “non essential” workers, and issued stop work orders on 241 aviation infrastructure projects valued at more than $8.8 billion—which forced countless private sector employees out of work.”The impasse over FAA reauthorization is a result of bipartisan, congressional malpractice. Democrats and Republicans, from both chambers, have refused to stop bickering and expounding parochial interests to maintain the safest aviation system in the world,” said ARSA’s Executive Director Sarah MacLeod.
The recent debacle is why ARSA opposes attaching policy to “must-pass” short-term extensions. Lawmakers must do their jobs and enact a long overdue FAA authorization law. There is too much at stake for our country’s aviation system, our economy, and our global competitiveness to set aviation policy by extension.
Unfortunately, House leaders have vowed to continue to include policy on future extensions until the Senate cedes to their demands to accept a provision included in the House-passed FAA reauthorization bill that would reverse a National Mediation Board decisions making it easier for unions to organize at airlines.
Tell Congress to “Keep it Clean” and give the FAA the operating and funding authority it needs to do its job and enact a new authorization bill. ARSA has made it easy to weigh-in with your representatives. Invest ten minutes of your time for the future of the industry.
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• Complete the pertinent details of the letter (which are in bold)
º Find the name, address, and fax number of your senators and member of Congress by typing in your zip code here.
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~~~ posted 08/04/11 ~~~