Group Pushes for House’s ATP Provision, Final Passage of Bill

Buffalo, New York- July 19, 2010 – With only 12 days to pass the FAA Reauthorization Bill before the latest extension expires and Congress heads on a six-week summer recess, members of the ‘Families of Continental Flight 3407’ will be in Washington all week, pushing the House and Senate to come to resolution on a compromise joint version of the bill. Group members expressed disappointment in the lack of a response to their requests to meet with Senator Jay Rockefeller (WV), the Chairman of the Senate’s Commerce Committee, and Senator Byron Dorgan (ND), the Chairman of the Aviation Subcommittee, key leaders involved in negotiations on the bill.

‘We are trying everything under the sun to get Senator Rockefeller’s attention about how badly we want this bill, and specifically the ATP (Airline Transport Pilot license) provision for all commercial pilots,’ stated Karen Eckert of Williamsville, New York, who lost her sister and noted 9/11 activist Beverly Eckert. ‘We went to Charleston, West Virginia during recess, and now we are going to be visible in the Hart Building this week. We know he wants this bill as much as we do, but we are past the point of just sitting back and hoping that it gets done. We are going to keep making noise until that bill is on the President’s desk.’

In addition to going door-to-door in both the House and Senate this week, rallying support for the bill’s passage, group members will hold a noon press conference on Tuesday to express their sense of urgency for completing the bill. The press conference will be held on the House Triangle on the East Front of the Capitol.

‘It’s been seventeen months since the crash, and it’s long overdue for Congress to act decisively to increase the level of safety with regional airlines,’ declared John Kausner of Clarence Center, New York, who lost his twenty-four year old daughter Ellyce. ‘We do not want another father, mother, husband, wife, son, daughter, brother, or sister to suffer the incredible pain that we are faced with every day. We are going to be watching every member of Congress closely over the next two weeks, to make sure that no one stands in the way of safety.’