ACI-NA Response to End Furloughs is Bittersweet

Today, ACI-NA Board Chair David N. Edwards, Jr., the CEO of Greenville-Spartanburg Airport District, issued the following statement in response to the congressional action to end the FAA furloughs:

“Airports Council International – North America (ACI-NA) is relieved that air traffic controller furloughs will soon end, returning our nation’s air transportation system to full capacity.  The travel and financial impacts over the last week for passengers, airlines, and airports were substantial, and if such impacts continued there would have been a devastating negative economic effect on our nation.  However, we are very disappointed that the Airport Improvement Program (AIP) was used to pay for this fix, as these funds were paid by passengers to maintain and enhance airport runways and taxiways, not fund FAA operations.”    

“ACI-NA supported other common sense bipartisan legislation that did not use AIP to eliminate the furloughs.  Airports agree that passenger delays and inconvenience cannot continue, but raiding capital funding to pay for FAA operations is unprecedented and does not take into account the need to make critical safety, security and capacity improvements.  Sadly, Congress missed an opportunity to allow airports to generate local funding for these necessary projects through raising the Passenger Facility Charge (PFC) user fee, which would have offset the cut to AIP funding.  

“ACI-NA will continue to work with Congress to obtain critical infrastructure funding to ensure airports can meet passenger safety and security needs as well as continue to generate jobs and economic development in hundreds of communities throughout the United States.”

 

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ABOUT ACI-NA

Airports Council International - North America represents local, regional and state governing bodies that own and operate commercial airports in the United States and Canada. ACI-NA member airports enplane more than 95 percent of the domestic and virtually all the international airline passenger and cargo traffic in North America.  More than 350 aviation-related businesses are also members of the association, which is the largest of the five worldwide regions of Airports Council International.