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Protect the Airport Improvement Program


We urge Congress to fully protect the federal Airport Improvement Program (AIP).


AIP finances critical safety, security, and capacity projects at large, medium, and small airports across the country.  Full federal funding for airport infrastructure projects is particularly important at a time when airports are artificially constrained from generating more local revenue from Passenger Facility Charges, which currently are capped at $4.50. 


  • AIP is a critical source of funding for airports of all sizes.

  • Small airports around the country particularly rely on the federal program to fund critical projects at their facilities such as constructing and repairing runways, taxiways, and other airfield projects.


  • Large airports also depend on AIP funding – including discretionary funds and money distributed through the Letter of Intent Program – to help pay for large capacity-enhancing projects. 


  • The FAA estimates that there will be $42.5 billion in AIP-eligible projects between 2013 and 2017 or approximately $8.5 billion per year.  The annual average is more than twice the $3.35 billion that Congress approved for AIP funds in Fiscal Year 2014.


  • Despite enormous capital needs there has been downward pressure on AIP funding.  In 2013, Congress diverted $253 million in AIP funding to end controller furloughs and to keep 149 contract towers open in the face of sequestration-related cuts.


  • Fortunately, as a result of the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2013, Congress provided full funding for AIP in Fiscal Year 2014.  We urge Congress to fully authorize AIP again at $3.35 billion and to ensure that those funds are not diverted for FAA operations. 


  • It is important to note that the AIP program is supported entirely by users of the aviation system and no general fund revenues are used for AIP grants. 

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