TSA fee hike angers travel industry

TSA fee hike angers travel industry
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A proposed fee hike for airport security is angering representatives of the nation’s travel industry. 

The fee that paid by passengers on each airplane ticket for security is scheduled to more than double from $2.50 to $5.60 soon as a result of the budget deal that was reached at the end of last year. 

Additionally, under the agreement, passengers will be charged twice if they have a layover for a connecting flight that last longer than four hours. 

The U.S. Travel Association said this week that it was particularly galling that the fees were being increased because the money will not be used for the Transportation Security Administration (TSA). 

“In the budget agreement for the current fiscal year, the fee was raised knowing that a significant portion would be used to fund unrelated projects by Congress, instead of using all of the new revenue to pay for improved security activities,” U.S. Travel Association President Roger Dow said in a statement.

"Not only did the fee increase, but now, if passengers have layovers of longer than four hours, they are charged the entire fee again,” Dow continued. 

Lawmakers have attempted to look to aviation fees in previous budget negotiations, but the airline industry was able to fight off the hike until this year. 

Dow said Congress needs to be looking for ways to actually boost the TSA’s funding because air travel is expected to increase drastically in the next couple of years. 

"Clearly there needs to be adequate funding for aviation security, but the last adjustment to the fee that funds TSA activities was very disappointing,” he said. 

"The travel community can support user fees when they are designed to demonstrably benefit the users who pay them,” Dow continued. “Unfortunately, the recent adjustments to the TSA fee do not meet that standard."