Grassroots Action Alert: More than $3 billion Per Year in Airport Capital Funds in Play

American Road & Transportation Builders AssociationHouse and Senate negotiators are currently working to complete action on a government-wide FY 2018 spending package.  One of the differences between the House and Senate appropriations bills is the Senate proposal to increase the Passenger Facility Charge (PFC) to $4 per enplanement and boost Airport Improvement Program (AIP) investment by $250 million to $3.6 billion.  The House transportation funding measure did not include a PFC increase and would keep AIP investment at $3.35 billion for the seventh consecutive year.

Airline groups continue to fight the PFC increase, claiming it would generate an additional $3.2 billion in taxes.  What the airlines don’t mention is that this $3.2 billion would be invested in airport capital improvements.  Furthermore, a $4 PFC increase would be 84 percent less than what airlines charge passengers to check a bag on a direct flight!  The PFC has not been increased since 2000.

The ARTBA co-chaired Transportation Construction Coalition (TCC) last week wrote to the bipartisan leadership of the House and Senate urging them to support both the Senate PFC and AIP proposals.  The TCC reminded members of Congress, “The language in the Senate Appropriations bill does not require local officials to increase their PFC – rather, it allows airports the flexibility to address their respective infrastructure needs at the local level.”

Your Help Needed:
You can reach the offices of your senators and representatives by calling the Capitol switchboard at 202.225.3121. Please tell them:

  • U.S. airports have $100 billion in infrastructure needs over the next four years, according to the Airports Council International-North America.
  • Continuing status quo investment threatens the ability of airports to keep up with growing passenger demands.
  • Please support the Senate PFC and AIP proposals to deliver needed resources to improve the nation’s airport infrastructure.

Please contact ARTBA’s Senior Vice President of Congressional Relations Dean Franks at dfranks@artba.org or 202-289-4434 with any questions.

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