US lawmakers propose funding for airport improvements

22 September 2020 (Last Updated September 22nd, 2020 11:50)

US legislators in the House of Representatives have proposed a $14bn investment to support a trust fund used for airport improvement works and other transportation programmes.

US lawmakers propose funding for airport improvements
The Airport and Airway Trust Fund provides financing for airport improvements and air traffic control operations. Credit: Danilo Bueno from Pixabay.

US legislators in the House of Representatives have proposed a $14bn investment to support a trust fund used for airport improvement works and other transportation programmes.

This comes after travel demand plummeted following the Covid-19 pandemic, leading to a significant shortfall in the Airport and Airway Trust Fund.

According to a Reuters report, the proposed bill aims to capitalise this fund, which provides financing for airport improvements and air traffic control operations.

The bill also proposed further funding for surface transportation programmes.

In addition, Reuters reported that the US administration is planning to approve an infrastructure package of up to $1tn to support transportation projects and help to revive the economy.

However, the plan was not announced due to the upcoming presidential election in November.

Earlier this month, the US Government announced plans to allocate more than $1.2bn in infrastructure grants for airports. It includes more than $1bn from the Airport Improvement Program (AIP).

The funding will be awarded through the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to 405 airports across the country.

It will be used for the construction and repair of runways and taxiways, the installation of airport perimeter fencing, and the creation of airport master plan studies, among others.

Earlier this year, the US Congress suspended taxes on passenger airline tickets, cargo and fuel.

Notably, the US is one of the worst affected countries by the pandemic in terms of confirmed Covid-19 cases and related fatalities.

As of 22 September, the disease has infected more than 6.8 million people in the country. The death toll has risen to nearly 200,000.