Congressman Johnson applauds final passage of Federal Aviation Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C.(Press Release) – On Wednesday, U.S. Representative Dusty Johnson (R-S.D.), a member of the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, applauded final passage of theFederal Aviation Administration (FAA) Reauthorization Act, which ensures continuity and stability of our air travel and makes key improvements to our aviation sector. TheFAA Reauthorization Act included key Johnson-led provisions.

“Most of us have experienced the frustration of outdated airports and planes, cancelations, delays, and more,”said Johnson. “The FAA Reauthorization Act makes critical investments and improvements in our aviation sector to improve the travel experience for travelers, pilots, airport workers, and more. I’m pleased to see my priorities for South Dakota and nationwide air travel included in the bill.”

Johnson priorities included in theFAA Reauthorization Act:

  • Protecting Essential Air Service (EAS) airports from unnecessary costs. South Dakota is home to three EAS airports: Watertown, Pierre, and Aberdeen.
  • Streamline National Environmental Policy Act (NEPA) Reviews for FAA projects. The bill encourages the Department of Transportation to use cloud-based platforms for NEPA reviews to increase efficiency.
  • Increase flexibility for the Airport Improvement Program by increasing support for non/small-hub airports.
  • Temporarily increases the federal cost share to 95% for non-hub/non-primary airports (Sioux Falls and Rapid City).
  • Prioritize replacement of FAA Air Traffic Control Towers at small hub airports that are at least 50-years old. The Sioux Falls airport is in this category.
  • Form a working group to evaluate best practices for transporting organs for donation in commercial aircrafts.