WASHINGTON – Late yesterday evening, the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure approved three provisions offered by Congresswoman Cheri Bustos’ (IL-17) in its markup of H.R. 2997, the 21st Century Aviation Innovation, Reform and Reauthorization (AIRR) Act. The 21st Century AIRR Act would reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration and other aviation-related programs.
“Investing in our airports will create jobs and grow our local communities, and I’m proud to fight for them on the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee,” Congresswoman Bustos said. “My bipartisan language included in this year’s House Federal Aviation Administration reauthorization bill will help veterans get good-paying jobs when they return home and help close the skills gap in the aviation workforce. While I oppose President Trump’s effort to privatize Air Traffic Control, my amendment would give communities served by non-hub airports like Chicago-Rockford International Airport, Peoria International Airport and Quad City International Airport a seat at the table and help ensure that smaller airports aren’t left behind. I’ll continue fighting for the airports in our region that drive our communities’ economic growth.”
Congresswoman Bustos’ first amendment would help address the skills gap by requiring a report on workforce needs in the aviation maintenance sector. Her second amendment would ensure that communities served by non-hub airports are represented on the Air Traffic Control Corporation’s Advisory Board, which would provide input to the private Air Traffic Control Corporation that would be created if the 21st Century AIRR Act is signed into law. Finally, language offered by Congresswoman Bustos in last year’s attempt to reauthorize FAA was included in the base text of the bill, which would expand hiring preference for recent veterans on airport infrastructure projects.