Budget Proposal Would Harm U.S. Airlines’ Ability to Compete Globally
Capt. Lee Moak, president of the Air Line Pilots Association, Int’l, issued the
following statement underscoring the union’s staunch opposition to the
administration’s proposed FY14 federal budget because it would compromise
aviation security and harm U.S. airlines’ ability to compete globally.
“While we are gratified to see the administration’s support in its federal
budget proposal for modernizing the national airspace through NextGen, the Air
Line Pilots Association, Int’l is seriously concerned that the proposed budget
threatens U.S. airlines’ ability to compete in the global marketplace.
“While the administration’s proposal should use U.S. taxpayers’ funds to help
U.S. airlines and their employees compete on a level playing field with heavily
state-backed foreign airlines, the proposed budget would allow the U.S. Customs
and Border Protection (CBP) to accept third-party reimbursements to begin or
expand services at facilities outside the United States, including preclearance
“As a result, the administration could proceed with a misguided proposal to
establish a preclearance facility at Abu Dhabi International Airport. Because no
U.S. airline serves the airport, the administration’s flawed proposal would hand
Etihad Airways, a foreign state-backed airline, a clear advantage over U.S.
airlines in attracting passengers. This proposal must be immediately stopped,
and the CBP’s U.S. taxpayer-funded resources must be directed to support U.S.
airlines, U.S. workers, and the U.S. economy.
“Similarly, the administration’s proposal to raise the Aviation Passenger
Security Fee from $2.50 to $5.00, with an annual increase of 50 cents each year
from 2015 through 2019 to a total of $7.50, only adds to the U.S. airline
industry’s already oppressive tax burden at a time when many foreign
state-backed airlines do business in a tax-free environment. Likewise, the
administration’s budget proposal for a $100 per flight fee magnifies the
disadvantage U.S. airlines face in the global marketplace.
“This FY2014 budget proposal threatens to hinder U.S. airlines and their
employees in their determined fight to compete against state-supported foreign
airlines. ALPA strongly urges Congress to reject this budget proposal, and
instead get behind U.S. airlines and their employees in their drive to compete
and prevail in the global economy.”
Call to Action to stop the creation of a new CBP preclearance site in Abu