Airports Council International – North America (ACI-NA) President and CEO Kevin M. Burke today congratulated the winners of yesterday’s federal elections and called for swift action by the new Congress to address the significant infrastructure needs of U.S. airports.
“I congratulate all the winners in yesterday’s elections. Airports are ready for take-off on the long overdue push to upgrade our nation’s aging infrastructure,” says Burke. “Bringing our outdated and strained airport system into the 21st century will benefit travelers, businesses, and local economies across the country.”
Hopes for a higher passenger facilities charge (PFC) were dashed in September when a spending bill for the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) stabilized airport funding for the next five years and provided for no increases to the PFC cap, which is currently $4.50. The extra charge on a traveler’s plane ticket is what funds the bulk of many airport modernizations and updates, and without raising the cap on that charge, airports will be unable to fund the major modernizations that can streamline and expedite the travel process.
“Despite the rhetoric in recent years, little has been done to help airports keep pace with infrastructure investments while passenger volume skyrockets,” Burke continues. “The outcome of last night’s elections provides a welcomed opportunity for a new Congress to come together in a bipartisan way to address the significant infrastructure needs of our airports.”
Back in September, when the bill was passed, airport officials and industry leaders were already looking forward to a new Congress that would be willing to invest more in the future of U.S. airports.