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FAA bill delayed over DCA flights

A funding bill for the Federal Aviation Administration, stalled in Congress, was put off again Friday morning, avoiding once more the question of whether Reagan National Airport should accommodate more long-haul flights.

The 60-day extension is the 14th since the last FAA authorization bill expired in 2007.

A group of Western lawmakers have been pushing for years to ease of the "perimeter rule," which bans most flights to destinations more than 1,250 miles from National. If approved, regular nonstop air travel from National would expand to Los Angeles, San Francisco, Salt Lake City, Phoenix and other cities.

But Virginia's senators, Mark Warner (D) and James Webb (D), along with the regional airports authority and local civic groups, have criticized the plan, saying it could overwhelm traffic, parking lots and security check-in lines and threaten a delicately crafted agreement to restrict air travel from National.

The issue will come up again after Congress's August recess.

--Derek Kravitz

By Derek Kravitz  | July 30, 2010; 3:50 PM ET
Categories:  Airlines, Airports, Aviation, Virginia  
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Sigh. I'm a Californian living in VA, and I despise the trek to Dulles. I understand the concern about traffic, but this isn't about adding slots, its about adding distance. The security lines and other issues could be handled by limiting the number of flights not their distance. The real issue here is noise. National is somewhat unique in that the major approach and departure corridors are on the river and past some of VA's most expensive real estate. That's the real issue here. NIMBY reigns supreme.

Posted by: oldtimehockey | July 30, 2010 5:30 PM | Report abuse

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