WASHINGTON (AP) — A House Republican aide says GOP leaders are sidelining a bill that would wrest responsibility for running the nation’s air traffic control system from the government and turn it over to a private, nonprofit corporation run by airlines and other aviation interests.

Instead, leaders plan to bring a bill before the House to temporarily extend the Federal Aviation Administration’s authorization to operate, which expires on March 31.

The aide spoke on condition of anonymity because he wasn’t authorized to speak publicly.

Pennsylvania Rep. Bill Shuster, chairman of the house transportation committee and the bill’s chief sponsor, said he is continuing to seek support for the privatization plan while preparing the extension bill.

Lawmakers opposed to the privatization plan say it cedes important congressional authority to a private corporation.


Photo Credit: A Southwest airlines jet waiting to depart in view of the air traffic control tower at Seattle-Tacoma International Airport in Seattle. Elaine Thompson / Associated Press