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Statement by AIA President & CEO Marion C. Blakey
July 22, 2011
It’s very disturbing that after 20 short-term extensions and almost four years without an FAA authorization bill, Congress decided to let FAA partially shut down today.
At midnight tonight, roughly 4,000 employees will be sent home and important airport projects and improvements like the Next Generation Air Transportation System will stop. Especially perplexing is that while the country worries about our nation’s fiscal health, this congressional impasse will cost the government over $200 million a week in lost revenue.
Yet, despite this unprecedented distraction, FAA will operate our national airspace system as safely as always. Airlines, pilots and the planes they fly will be as trustworthy as ever. You can be sure if today’s decision meant a full FAA shutdown causing lawmakers to feel the wrath of grounded constituents in the middle of summer vacation, the outcome would have been different.
Hopefully, Members of Congress will have time to think about how to get the long overdue FAA bill done as they fly safely home over the weekend.