Today, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1765, the Reducing Flight Delays Act of 2013 by a vote of 361-41, according to Congressman Markwayne Mullin (OK-2). This bill clarifies the Federal Aviation Administration's (FAA) flexibility to address the recent furloughs of air traffic controllers causing significant delays in air travel.
H.R. 1765 allows the Secretary to transfer $253 million from other FAA accounts to their Operations account to avoid staff reductions and possibly contract tower closures scheduled to occur later this year. This comes after the White House claimed that current law would not allow the FAA the flexible authority to transfer funds between accounts.
Mullin said he voted in favor of this legislation to clarify that FAA has the ability to use their funds in a more common-sense manner that protects travelers.
"It is frustrating to see the American public suffer at the hands of an administrative decision." Mullin said. "This bill doesn't create new spending; it simply provides the needed flexibility for FAA to move their existing funds from one account to another to avoid further delays in flights and hopefully contract tower closures."
Mullin said, air traffic controllers are a vital part to getting people from one place to another safely, securely and on time.
Yesterday, the Senate passed S. 853, Reducing Flight Delays Act of 2013, which is the same as the House passed bill. H.R. 1765 will now be sent to the President for his signature.