House Passes FAA Extension

 

GA MEMO 2011-92 Subjects: 

 

1. House Passes FAA Extension

 2. House Transportation Leaders Introduce Bill Condemning EU Emissions Trading

           

1. House Passes FAA Extension

This afternoon the House passed an extension, H.R. 2553, of FAA authorities that would run through September 16, 2011.  The extension includes two provisions dealing with the Essential Air Service (EAS) that are opposed by Senate Commerce Committee Chairman John Rockefeller (D-WV).  This extension does not provide contract authority for the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) until the end of Fiscal Year 2011 ending September 30, 2011 as advocated by ACI-NA and its members.  Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Democrats used the issues involving AIP funding as one of the reasons why they were opposing the bill during the debate. In fact, a letter sent by ACI-NA President Greg Principato to Committee leadership regarding the need for AIP contract authority was referenced during the debate.

The Senate is expected to reject the House proposal, but has introduced a clean extension that includes FAA contract authority for AIP through September 30, 2011.  Without an extension signed into law by this Friday, July 22, the FAA’s authority will expire thus forcing a shutdown of the agency.  ACI-NA will keep you updated as the situation continues to unfold.

 

2. House Transportation Leaders Introduce Bill Condemning EU Emissions Trading

Today, House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee Chairman John Mica (R-FL), Committee Ranking Member Nick Rahall (D-WV), Aviation Subcommittee Chairman Tom Petri (R-WI) and Aviation Subcommittee Ranking Member Jerry Costello (D-IL) introduced “European Union Emissions Trading Scheme Prohibition Act of 2011.” According to the bill sponsors, the bill is in direct response to EU plan to impose a costly fee on any civil aviation operators landing in or departing from EU airports to offset carbon emission.  Beginning on January 1, 2012, all airlines would be forced to participate in the EU’s emissions scheme despite the objections of the United States Government and now Congress.

According to the bill sponsors, the legislation directs the Secretary of Transportation to prohibit U.S. aircraft operators from participating in the EU’s Emissions Trading Scheme (ETS).  The bill also instructs U.S. officials to negotiate or take any action necessary to ensure U.S. aviation operators are not penalized by any unilaterally imposed EU emissions trading scheme.

The Committee’s press release can be accessed here.