The U.S. House Appropriation Committee last night approved the $233 billion Departments of Transportation, and Housing and Urban Development (or THUD) Appropriations bill for FY2021.

The bill was ordered reported, as slightly amended, by a party-line vote of 30 to 22.

We are happy to report that the bill includes funding for the ACPA-advocated Airport Pavement Technology Program (APTP). Language reported out of subcommittee is shown below:

COMMITTEE RECOMMENDATION
Airport technology research.—The Committee recommendation includes not less than $40,666,000 for the FAA’s airport technology research program to conduct research on topics such as concrete and asphalt airport pavement in accordance with section 744 of the FAA Reauthorization Act (P.L. 115–254); airport marking and lighting; airport rescue and firefighting; airport planning and design; wildlife hazard mitigation; and visual guidance.

This is very similar to language in last year’s appropriations bill, as reported in ACPA today last January.  Section 744 of the 2018 FAA Reauthorization Act is the APTP program ACPA successfully championed through close collaboration with PCA and NAPA. The $6M for the APTP will be funded from the $40.67 million available for the broader Airport Technology Research Program.

“It is good news that we continue to get attention on this program even during these times of austerity,” says Leif Wathne, who along with Gary Mitchell, worked closely with FAA officials, legislative consultants, and others to secure the language in the bill.

The earliest the legislation is likely to reach the House floor for consideration is the week of July 27-31, according to reporting by ENO. House leaders intend to bring the 12 annual spending bills to the floor in multiple “minibus” packages.

The first minibus, consisting of four bills, will likely go to the floor next week. The remaining six bills (including Transportation and HUD) are anticipated to go to the floor the week of July 27 either as a single package or as two separate packages.

As a next step, the Senate will have to act on their appropriations bills.

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