...A Complicated Answer...

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Congress (unlike the rest of us) is still in recess, but will be back in session Jan. 20. The appropriations process is high on the agenda, but is nonetheless likely to drag on through the session, and even through the summer. "We'd be lucky to get an appropriations bill passed by October," Eric Byer, director of government affairs for the National Air Transportation Association, told AVweb yesterday. And he acknowledged that getting the money for GA will be an uphill battle. "We've had a lot of good discussions with key members of Congress," he said. "We have lots of support, but with the current fiscal situation, it's tough. We'd like to get the whole $100 million up front this year, but as things are, our goal is just to get the ball rolling for the current fiscal year, and get what we can." Once the measure has been funded once, he said, it's easier to get continued funding in subsequent years.