What FAA shutdown means for workers, ticket prices

Friday - 7/22/2011, 6:18pm EDT

Dave McConnell, Capitol Hill correspondent, WTOP

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More than likely, the Federal Aviation Administration is headed for a shutdown. The agency's latest temporary funding bill expires tonight at midnight. Meanwhile, the House and Senate have been squabbling over various provisions in the current funding bill. The differences are severe enough that an agreement won't likely come in time.

That means as many as 4,000 FAA employees could be furloughed and some construction projects could be halted. However, air traffic controllers, who are considered essential personnel, will stay on the job and FAA officials are quick to stress that the shutdown will not affect flights or flight safety.

WTOP veteran Capitol Hill Correspondent Dave McConnell joined In Depth with Francis Rose to discuss why the current funding bill fell apart and what a partial shutdown means.

What a partial shutdown means:

  • Some workers will be furloughed
  • Some construction projects will be halted
  • Cheaper tickets because the FAA will not collect ticket taxes

The current funding bill fell apart over disagreements about:

  • labor provisions dealing with unionization
  • subsidies for small airports