Independent analysis of EPA data indicates that if the 2015 standards are implemented on the regular timeline, more than 950 counties will be nonattainment areas. This would impose significant new regulatory requirements and barriers to economic development. This is unfortunate and unnecessary: EPA projects that even without new regulations, ozone levels across most of the country will be at or below 70 ppb in less than ten years.
The current FAA authorization expires on September 30, 2017. At the moment there is no current pending legislation. However, each chamber has held hearings to develop their respective versions of FAA reauthorization legislation.
PCA supports a long-term reauthorization that provides the certainty needed for proper construction and development planning. Additionally, PCA supports the following:
Airport Improvement Program (AIP): The AIP, established in 1992, grants millions of dollars to local agencies for projects that enhance safety, security, capacity, and address a number of environmental concerns. It provides for much needed airport capital improvements and repairs and allows airports to keep up with rising traffic demands. Funds for the AIP are drawn from the AATF and are typically between $3 billion and $3.5 billion annually.
Airfield Pavement Technology: The Airfield Pavement Technology program authorizes the FAA to partner with universities and non-profit organizations to research and deploy airfield pavement technology. This technology can result in new ways to create and utilize stronger, more durable runways and taxiways that will save taxpayer money and expand airport growth.
Passenger Facility Charge (PFC): The PFC was instituted in 1990 as a source of revenue for airport development. It is a state, local, or airport authority fee, not a federally imposed tax deposited into the U.S. Treasury. All funds collected through the PFC stay with local communities for use toward eligible airport-related projects. In 2000, Congress capped the PFC at $4.50 per segment, with an $18 limit for the entire trip.
Unmanned Aircraft Systems (UAS)/Drones: With technological advances, UAS are now increasingly used in commercial and industrial applications. As a result, the FAA reauthorization addresses drones and airfield safety. Action Requested: Both Chambers should work together to pass a long term FAA authorization bill before the current extension expires on September 30, 2017.
Senate Action Requested:
The Senate FAA legislation should maintain funding for the Airfield Pavement Technology, increase funds for the Airport Improvement Program and uncap the Passenger Facility Charge. House Action Requested: The House bill should contain provisions that increase funding for the Airport Improvement Program, uncap the Passenger Facility Charge, and enable the FAA to study and deploy Airfield Pavement Technologies.