Recommendations on H.R. 5481, a Bill To Amend the Federal Aviation Act

B-120751: Published: Oct 11, 1979. Publicly Released: Oct 11, 1979.

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Several recommendations were made concerning proposed legislation which would amend the Federal Aviation Act and the International Air Transportation Fair Competitive Practices Act (the Fly America Act). While the proposed legislation would relax the requirement to "fly American" between overseas points, the Act may harshly and unduly deny an employee recovery of his transportation costs because of his inability to fully comprehend the complexities of international air traffic management. Therefore, GAO urged that the disallowance penalty on travel between points overseas be eliminated. If provisions are included to waive the "fly American" requirement wherever foreign governments agree to waive their fly-national laws and policies, difficulties could arise to the extent that GAO might be required to monitor and make legal determinations affecting the implementation of international agreements. GAO recommended that the Secretary of State be given the responsibility for making the legal determinations necessary to administer any reciprocal agreement exemption to the Fly America Act so as to avoid affecting international agreements. One section of the proposed legislation would amend portions of the Fly America Act dealing with discriminatory and unfair competitive practices by redesignating the various subsections and adding a new subsection. A previous GAO report to Congress which dealt with this matter recommended certain legislative proposals for amending these sections. It was suggested that those proposals be reviewed with the agencies concerned for inclusion in the current proposed legislation.

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