Congress is giving the FAA another short extension, this time until Sept. 30. The FAA has been operating without extended authority since the last authorization expired in 2007. That authority was passed in 2003 and Congress has been unable to agree since that time, passing extension after extension to keep the FAA funded.
Included in this short extension is aviation safety and pilot training language brought about after the crash of a commuter aircraft the night of Feb. 12, 2009. Members of both the Senate and House who are charged with preparing legislation for reauthorization said they did not want to hold up the safety issues while they try to resolve differences that have resulted in the stalemate for permanent authorization.