FAA Funding Bill?/Sans/ User Fees?Passes First Hurdle

The latest version of the House FAA funding legislation-H.R. 915 (known as the FAA Reauthorization Act of 2009) received a nod from the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. The bill does not incorporate user fees, and is supported by most in the general aviation industry. Next in line is the House Ways and Means Committee, which has also supported FAA funding without user fees in the past. One fear is that the implementation of NextGen modernization could spur the debate to include user fees to help supplement the needed funds. Also of concern to opponents of user fees is a line in President Obama's preliminary budget that seems to favor adopting the fees beginning in 2012.