A bill to ensure that Airport Improvement Program (AIP) funds can be used by airports to incentivize early completion of critical runway and airport projects was introduced in the House by Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure Ranking Member Sam Graves (R-MO) and Subcommittee on Aviation Ranking Member Garret Graves (R-LA).
The Expedited Delivery of Airport Infrastructure Act of 2020 (H.R. 5912) makes incentive payments for early completion of projects an eligible cost under AIP. The AIP program provides grants to public agencies and other entities for the planning, development, and execution of infrastructure projects at public-use airports, such as runways and taxiways.
“When it comes to infrastructure projects, time is money,” said T&I Committee Ranking Member Sam Graves. “This is a good government bill: a simple but important step to help prevent project delays for airports and their surrounding communities that rely on those facilities for both travel and business. Delivering projects ahead of schedule can save money, which in turn can have the same economic impact as increasing investment without any additional federal resources. This bill is a win-win for all involved, including taxpayers.”
“Better incentives create better outcomes, plain and simple,” said Aviation Subcommittee Ranking Member Garret Graves. “This bill optimizes local airports’ ability to leverage the AIP so they can get facility improvements up and running for air travelers faster and smoother, helping close the credibility gap created when projects aren’t delivered for the public on time.”
Under current law, airports cannot use AIP funds to incentivize early completion of airport projects, even if the early completion would result in significant capacity or efficiency gains for the airport.
H.R. 5912 would allow airports, including those with short construction seasons or disruptive airfield projects, to use up to $1 million in AIP money to incentivize a contractor to complete the project early. Use of incentive payments would be left to the discretion of the airport operator. Similar incentives are common in the construction of surface transportation projects, and early completion of airport projects can similarly result in cost savings.
Letter of support from the Associated General Contractors of America
Letter of support from Airports Council International North America and the American Association of Airport Executives