While Congress fights over the $16.5 million subsidy cuts, the federal government is losing about $30 million per day in airline ticket taxes because the FAA cannot collect the taxes while it is shutdown.
"They're trying to save $14 million really out of a $160 million program. But we're losing $200 million a week in ticket tax revenue. The passengers are paying it. The [airlines] are pocketing it. We need that money," Rep. Jim Moran, D-Va., said on ABC's "TopLine" today.
If Congress does not pass an extension before returning from their summer break, the federal government is set to lose about $1.3 billion.
"Don't put the livelihoods of thousands of people at risk, don't put projects at risk and don't let a billion dollars at a time when we're scrambling for every dollar we can get left on the table because Congress did not act," President Obama said yesterday.
Even though the FAA cannot collect taxes, most of the airlines have increased their prices so the would-be tax revenue is now going to the airlines' bottom line. Only Alaska, Hawaiian and Spirit airlines have passed the tax savings on to their customers.
The Senate recessed on Tuesday until September, erasing any possibility for quickly resolving the issue. The House left Monday night.
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Likely Congress will be unable to resolve the legislative standoff before September.
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