A battle in Washington, DC is holding up reauthorization of the Federal Aviation Administration.

But this isn’t the normal DC battle – it’s between two airlines: Delta and American. Delta wants to lift restrictions on flights out of Ronald Reagan National Airport in D.C. while American wants to keep restrictions in place to protect its hub at Dulles International Airport in northern Virginia.

U.S. Rep. Sam Graves, R-Mo. 6th Dist., chairs the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee. He said the fight could well jeopardize the FAA reauthorization bill.

“It’s a turf battle between those two airlines,” he said. “But this is a bill, though, that has to pass. If we don’t reauthorize the FAA then all the programs fall apart.”

Graves said the reauthorization bill won unanimous approval in committee and passed on a 351-to-69 vote before the full U.S. House.

“The Senate…can’t even get a bill out of committee over there (so) hopefully they’ll just take up ours,” he said. “It’s part of the reauthorization process which we have to go through every four to five years to reauthorize these agencies and programs within the Department of Transportation.”

Congress has until September 30th to send the FAA reauthorization bill to President Biden.

Brent Martin of KFEQ in St. Joseph contributed to this report.

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