The Senate Appropriations Committee on Thursday approved a FY 2019 DOT/FAA spending bill that calls for an additional $750 million for airport infrastructure projects and a $3 million increase for the Contract Tower and Contract Tower Cost-Share Programs. The committee easily approved the noncontroversial bill by a vote of 31 to 0.
The Senate bill does not propose to raise the federal cap on local Passenger Facility Charges. Last year, the Senate Appropriations Committee approved a bipartisan proposal that would have raised the PFC cap from $4.50 to $8.50 for originating passengers. But the final FY 2019 omnibus spending bill did not contain the airport-backed proposal.
The Senate version of the FY 2019 DOT spending bill contains an additional $750 million for airport infrastructure projects - $250 million more than the House version of the bill. The FAA will be able to distribute the funds to airports through AIP discretionary grants. The additional funding, which comes on top of $3.35 billion in traditional AIP funding, would be available through September 30, 2021.
A summary of the bill provided by the Appropriations Committee can be found here.