4,000 FAA Workers Furloughed

Monday, July 25, 2011

(DC Labor)

Some 4,000 Federal Aviation Administration employees including nearly 900 in the metro Washington area -- were furloughed Saturday. The current FAA reauthorization expired at midnight on Friday, July 22 and was delayed by political maneuvering. These employees do everything from getting money out the door for airport construction projects, to airport safety planning and NextGen research, said FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt, "We need them at work. The sentiment was echoed by Bill Chouinard, President of AFSCME 1653, which represents most of the local FAA employees. "Our members just wants to do their jobs" added Carl Goldman, Executive Director, AFSCME Council 26. "Those in Congress responsible for this mess should get out of the way and let them work." While there's no real disagreement in Congress over the agency's basic financing needs, efforts to harmonize the House and Senate funding bills collapsed when Republicans added controversial provisions to the proposed compromise, including a measure that would make it harder for airline and railroad employees to unionize.


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