Airline Fee Increaseby Representative Tulsi Gabbard
Posted on 2013-12-11
GABBARD asked and was given permission to address the House for
Ms. GABBARD. Mr. Speaker, I want to commend the work that has been
done by Senator Murray and Congressman Ryan as we work towards passing
a budget deal before the end of this year. I think the end result is
not perfect in anyone's eyes, but what they have done is something that
symbolized what can be achieved when two sides come together in the
best interests for our country.
However, there is one element of the agreement that I am raising with concern because my State of Hawaii has a very unique circumstance. We have six major islands where people live with no interisland railway, no highway or ferry system that connects each of these islands; and people who commute back and forth, people who look for access to health care, have no option other than to fly. In some cases, this air route is an essential lifeline in each of these areas.
In the past, Congress has recognized Hawaii's unique situation and exclusive reliance on air travel. We are concerned about the disparate impact of increased taxes and fees on this air travel in our State.
Again, the budget deal is a solid step in the right direction, but we must ensure that the people of Hawaii, who have no options available to them other than to fly, are not unduly burdened with the fee increase. I look forward to being able to address this issue.