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FAA Shutdown Averted: House Approves Temporary Extension Of Programs

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A Southwest Airlines Boeing 737-7H4 passenger jet prepares to land at Midway Airport on April 5, 2011 in Chicago, Illinois. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images) | Getty File

WASHINGTON -- The House has approved a temporary extension of Federal Aviation Administration programs, avoiding a shutdown of the agency as lawmakers work out their last remaining differences on a long-term plan.

A bill to extend FAA programs through Feb. 17 was approved by a voice vote – the 23rd such extension since 2007. The agency's operating authority had been due to expire on Jan. 31.

Lawmakers said House and Senate negotiators are very near an agreement on a final bill, but needed extra time to resolve a handful or remaining issues. None is seen as an obstacle to passage.

Last week negotiators reached a compromise on rules for how airline workers can form unions, the main issue that has been holding up passage of a long-term bill.

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