Smith Amends FAA Reauthorization to Strengthen Commercial Air Service in Rural Areas

Apr 27, 2018

Washington, D.C. – Congressman Adrian Smith (R-NE) authored two amendments, which unanimously passed the House, to strengthen access to commercial air travel in rural areas.

The first amendment provides regulatory relief to communities suffering from extensive flight cancellations caused by pilot shortages, allowing them to continue receiving full funding under the Airport Improvement Program. The second amendment requires the U.S. Government Accountability Office to study current and future aviation workforce needs to inform policy proposals and address pilot shortages.

Congressman Smith said:

“In rural areas like Nebraska’s Third District, commercial air service is a vital economic link for communities which are several hours drive from the nearest major airport. I appreciate the passage of my amendments, which will provide regulatory relief to communities impacted by pilot shortages and inform our efforts to address these concerns moving forward.”

The FAA Reauthorization Act of 2018 reauthorizes the Federal Aviation Administration, including the Essential Air Service program, for five years.

Smith’s floor speech in support of the amendments can be viewed here.