Mica: Furloughed FAA workers will be paid for missed time

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Mica said he hoped providing back pay to the furloughed employees would "cheer all those workers who have been left out on a limb by this.”

Explaining his decision to add cuts to subsidies for flights to rural airports in Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (Nev.), Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (Mont.) and Senate Commerce, Science and Transportation Committee Chairman Jay Rockefeller's (W.Va.) districts — all Democrats — Mica said he just wanted “to unclog the toilet.

"But it backed up," he said of the shutdown that consumed Washington for most of the week once lawmakers settled negotiations over the federal debt ceiling.

The FAA Managers Association called Friday for the furloughed workers to be given back pay.

The organization had established a relief fund while the workers were furloughed. 

The shutdown, which began July 23, is estimated to have cost the federal government $30 million per day. In addition to the FAA workers, transportation observers say about 70,000 workers were put out of work by canceled airport construction projects.