Congress Strikes Deal to End FAA Impasse

Shutdown has idled 74,000 workers
By Newser Editors and Wire Services
Posted Aug 4, 2011 3:42 PM CDT
Trucks drive down a road near a half-completed 236-foot FAA control tower at Oakland International Airport.   (Getty Images)

(Newser) – Congress has reached a bipartisan compromise to end the partial shutdown of the Federal Aviation Administration that has left 74,000 transportation and construction workers idled, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid said today. The deal would allow the Senate to approve a House bill extending the FAA's operating authority through mid-September, including a provision that cuts $16.5 million in air service subsidies to rural communities.

Republicans had insisted on the cuts as their price for restoring the FAA to full operation. But the cuts may become moot. Democrats said they expect the White House to effectively waive or negate the cuts, which would allow continued service to 13 communities affected by the provision. "This is a tremendous victory for American workers everywhere," Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said in a statement.

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