“YES” on the McClintock Amendment
Tonight, the House of Representatives may vote on the McClintock Amendment to the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development, and Related Agencies Appropriations Act (H.R.5972). The amendment would eliminate the Essential Air Services (EAS) program.
The EAS provides subsidies to commuter and regional airlines in order to provide service to rural airports that are not economically viable absent federal subsidies. The House Appropriations Committee proposed to increase the program’s budget by 11% over last year’s level. As a result, EAS subsidies would reach a record $214 million. In their initial proposal to reauthorize the Federal Aviation Administration, House Republicans proposed to wind down funding for the EAS to just $80 million in FY2013 ($30 million in discretionary and $50 million in mandatory).
The subsidies can reach hundreds of dollars per ticket and simply subsidize rural airports that could not otherwise compete and survive. Taxpayers should not be subsidizing airline tickets for other fliers. As lawmakers struggle to reduce America’s crushing debt and deficit, eliminating this subsidy should be a no-brainer.
Heritage Action supports the McClintock Amendment and will include it as a key vote on our scorecard.