Senate Approves Measure Ending FAA Shut Down

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Approximately 4,000 Federal Aviation Administration employees will be heading back to work Monday after the Senate passed legislation to end a two-week shut-down.

The news comes after Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, D-Nev. announced bipartisan compromise Thursday that would allow his chamber to pass a House bill extending the FAA's operating authority. 

"This agreement does not resolve the important differences that still remain," said Reid, D-Nev. "But I believe we should keep Americans working while Congress settles its differences, and this agreement will do exactly that."

In addition to leaving countless workers temporarily unemployed, the shut-down has cost the federal government roughly $400 million in uncollected airline ticket taxes.

Most airline passengers did not notice the two-week shutdown because the FAA kept its air traffic controllers on the job.

The bill serves as more of a reprieve than a solution since it only extends the FAA's operating authority through mid-September.  

"The House has made it clear that the anti-worker piece is a priority for them and they also put us on notice that they don't intend to give in," said Vince Morris, a spokesman for Sen. Jay Rockefeller, D-W.Va., chairman of a committee that oversees FAA. "So we are bracing for a new fight in September."

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