The US House of Representatives passed a funding extension for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), decreasingly the prospects for passage of the pending Federal Aviation Administration Reauthorization Act H.R. 915.
FAA funding has been handled by a series of temporary extensions since expiration of the last authorization on September 30, 2007. A House bill was passed, but the Senate version is in the Senate Finance Committee.
The Senate version reportedly does not contain language from the House bill that defines express carrier employees more narrowly and would reclassify many FedEx ground workers under the National Labor Relations Act rather than their current status under the Railway Labor Act. This, according to industry sources, would make it easier for the International Brotherhood of Teamsters to organize those FedEx employees.
FedEx began its operations as an airline and, therefore, came under the Railway Labor Act. The current law had contained similar provisions in the House version which were not included in the Senate bill. When the bills were reconciled, the controversial labor provision was excluded.