President Donald Trump’s proposed federal budget calls for higher fees on air travellers, slashing funding for passenger rail service, and privatising the operation of the US air-traffic control system.
USA Today reports that Trump’s fiscal year 2019 budget would allow the US Transportation Security Administration to increase security-related fees on each air-travel segment flown from $5.60 to $6.60 as of October 1. In 2020, the fee would rise to $8.25.
The increased revenue would be used to improve security screening equipment and other airport enhancements.
The proposal — like most of Trump’s budget plan — is considered a non-starter in Congress, however. While supported by airport officials, the airline industry and its allies strongly oppose raising the fees.
Airlines do support Trump’s proposal to take air-traffic control operations out of the hands of the U.S. Federal Aviation Administration and award them to a private contractor. But lawmakers are also expected to reject that plan.
Trump’s budget proposes cutting funding for Amtrak, the US national passenger rail corporation, in half, USA Today reported. That’s another idea that has been rejected by Congress in the past and has little chance of success this year, analysts said.