Keep your eyes on the clock and your fingers on the computer keyboard because if the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) has a partial shutdown after midnight Friday Night you stand to save some serious money! The FAA is currently in a partisan dispute over legislation to extend that agency's operating authority and if they can't reach a compromise by midnight then airlines cannot charge, or collect Federal Taxes. According to U.S. Transportation Secretary, Ray "Grease the Wheels" LaHood, the federal government could potentially lose $200 million per week in airline ticket taxes, halt $2.5 billion in airport construction projects and put 4,000 employees temporarily out of work.
According to the Chicago Tribune, "the main obstacle is a provision sought by House Republicans and the airline industry that would make it more difficult for airline and railroad workers to unionize. House Republicans also want to eliminate government subsidies for airline service to 13 rural airports, a $16 million provision that Senate Democrats say is unacceptable. The union provision was added to a long-term FAA funding bill earlier this year, but negotiations on that bill have stalled. Without long-term legislation, an extension bill is necessary to keep the agency operating."
For the complete story, click here. In the meantime, pay attention to the clock. Especially if you are an International Traveler where those tax savings could offset the higher costs of such travel.
Tick, Tick, Tick
UPDATE: The FAA has indeed been partially shutdown and as a result - Collection of Federal Airline Taxes have been suspended. Consumers can now capitalize on that and save some money until this matter is resolved by lawmakers. Let your fingers do the walking - time to find some deals!