FAA bill emerges as vehicle for airline safety rules

After months of delay, the Senate this week began debate on a $34 billion FAA reauthorization bill, but a host of amendments requiring new safety measures for regional airlines could prove contentious. Spurred by the families of victims killed in the February 2009 crash of a commuter plane outside Buffalo, N.Y., senators have weighed down the FAA bill with rules that would increase the requirements for pilot training, open training records and authorize surprise safety inspections.

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