House to fund FAA through December, with furlough backpay

The House of Representatives will vote next week on a bill to extend funding of the Federal Aviation Administration through December and provide backpay to workers who were furloughed for nearly two weeks during a partial shutdown of the agency earlier this month.

House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-Fla.) introduced a short-term extension of FAA funding, the 22nd for the beleaguered agency since 2007, that extends FAA funding through Dec. 31. The measure runs longer than the last three-week measure, but cuts the FAA's overall budget by 5 percent.

The measure does not include controversial labor provisions or cuts to the flight subsidies for rural airports that held up the last round of FAA funding this summer.

An impasse in Congress over the current extension led to the agency being partially shut down for 13 days in August. About 4,000 workers were furloughed, and an estimated 70,000 construction workers were placed out of work.