Obama Signs Funding Extension To End FAA Shutdown

By Eliza

Aug 5, 2011 4:24pm

ABC News’ Mary Bruce (@marykbruce) Reports:

President Obama has signed into law a bill to fund the Federal Aviation Administration through mid-September that will allow more than 74,000 federal employees and contractors to return to work.

On Thursday, Congress reached a bipartisan compromise to end the two-week long shutdown and temporarily extend funding for the FAA. This morning, the Senate was in session for just seconds to pass the bill by unanimous consent.

The president, who urged Congress to resolve the shutdown by the end of this week, expressed relief today. “This impasse was an unnecessary strain on local economies across the country at a time when we can’t allow politics to get in the way of our economic recovery.  So I’m glad that this stalemate has finally been resolved,” he said in a written statement.

“I'm pleased that Congress has passed an agreement which will allow tens of thousands of people to return to their jobs rebuilding runways and working on construction projects all over America, while removing the uncertainty hanging over the jobs of thousands of hardworking FAA employees,” Obama said.

The shutdown has cost the federal government hundreds of millions in uncollected airline ticket taxes. If Congress had waited to pass an extension until after returning from their summer break, the federal government would have lost roughly $1.3 billion.

Now that the funding has been extended, FAA employees and construction workers could be back on the job as soon as Monday.

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