Aviation Industry Welcomes Latest House FAA Bill
While it may seem to many like the movie “Groundhog Day,” the House of Representatives passed yet another version of FAA reauthorization on Friday, sending the measure to a House-Senate conference committee to meld it into the Senate FAA reauthorization bill passed in February. But the two pieces of legislation vary significantly, raising uncertainties about reaching a compromise. Passed on a largely party-line vote of 223-196, the House bill was hailed by Republicans as a job- and money-saver. Democrats counter that the bill would make drastic cuts to the FAA and have dire consequences for the nationπs infrastructure, jobs and the economy. General aviation interests noted that the “FAA Reauthorization and Reform Act of 2011” (H.R. 658) preserves the fuel tax mechanism, rather than imposing new, onerous user fees. While the House plan contains no increase in fuel taxes, the Senate version hikes the taxes on both jet-A and avgas. NBAA noted that the House bill also includes language to preserve the Block Aircraft Registration Request program. The House rejected an amendment to the bill that would have banned nighttime operations at Bob Hope Burbank and Van Nuys Airports in California.