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House passes bill to limit TSA airline security fees

The House on Wednesday passed legislation to limit airline passenger security fees imposed by the Transportation Security Administration.

Passed 423-0, the measure would only allow the TSA to charge $5.60 per one-way trip and $11.20 per round trip.

Rep. Richard Hudson (R-N.C.), the bill's sponsor, said it was necessary because the TSA had misinterpreted the increase on airline security fees outlined by the 2013 budget agreement by charging more than twice the amount for round trips as for one-way trips.

"H.R. 5462 looks to correct this overreach and save American taxpayers from having to shell out millions of dollars in extra fees," Hudson said. "Reducing the burden on airline passengers benefits everyone — from helping families save money when taking a vacation to cutting costs for our small businesses whose employees travel for work."

Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee (D-Texas) said the legislation would ensure that passengers pay reasonable fees for round trips, instead of more than twice the cost of a one-way trip.

"Simply put, this straightforward, bipartisan legislation will ensure that passengers are no longer charged air transportation fees above and beyond what Congress envisioned and intended," Jackson Lee said.

After the vote, the U.S. Travel Association said that while the measure was an "improvement," user fees should only go toward TSA projects that directly benefit passengers instead of anything unrelated to the agency.

"[E]ven with this notable improvement, we still believe the current TSA fee fails to meet a critical criterion for acceptable travel user fees," U.S. Travel Association President and CEO Roger Dow said in a statement.

 

The Hill, By: Cristina Marcos

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