Senates Extends Launch Indemnification Only For One Year, Extends INKSNA Waiver
In the wee hours this morning, the Senate not only passed legislation to deal with the fiscal cliff, but a bill that would extend the FAA's authority to indemnify commercial launch services companies against certain third-party claims. The FAA's launch liability indemnification authority expired at midnight. The bill is entirely different than what passed the House in November, so must be returned to the House for its consideration.
The Senate kept the House bill number, HR. 6586, but replaced all the text with a modified version of S. 3661, the Space Exploration Sustainability Act introduced by Senators Nelson (D-FL) and Hutchison (R-TX) on December 5. The Senate version of H.R. 6586, as passed this morning, provides for the following:
The House is in session today, so it is possible it could take up the legislation immediately. Or not. The congressional schedule is very fluid at the moment.
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