The Senate commerce committee has approved a two-year Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization, with a boost in Airport Improvement Program (AIP) construction aid but no broad hike in passenger facility charges (PFCs).
The $34.5-billion bill, cleared by the panel on July 21, includes $8.1 billion for AIP. If the full Senate passes the bill, it would go to conference with a three year, $53.5-billion bill the House passed in May. Like the Senate panel’s bill, the House’s has $4 billion for AIP in 2010 and $4.1 billion in 2011. AIP’s 2009 appropriation is $3.5 billion. The House bill also raises the PFC limit to $7 from $4.50. The Senate panel’s bill removes the PFC cap but only at six airports.
FAA has operated under extensions since September 2007. The latest stopgap lapses Sept. 30.