Congress Extends FAA Funding Until March 31

 - September 25, 2008, 10:49 AM

The House and Senate agreed earlier this week to extend FAA programs and current aviation taxes on fuel and airline tickets for another six months, to March 31, and sent the bill to President Bush for his signature. Without an extension, the FAA would lose the authority to collect the taxes and to spend nearly $7.9 billion over the next six months. The agency has been operating on short-term extensions since last September because a long-term reauthorization bill has been stalled in the Senate. The previous extension was set to expire on Tuesday. An FAA reauthorization bill passed last year by the House and under consideration by the Senate now will die at the end of this year, and it will be up to the new President and Congress to come up with a new bill. “A new Congress means new FAA funding bills will have to be introduced,” said AOPA executive v-p of government affairs Andy Cebula. “And the user-fee proponents haven’t gone away.”