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The U.S. House of Representatives recently passed an important law requiring the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to consider community emergency and medical response needs when making a determination of an airport’s runway length. The FAA’s determination impacts the amount of federal assistance an airport can receive. The change, which is part of a major reauthorization of the FAA, will allow Fairchild International Airport to continue receiving key assistance from the FAA for maintenance and upgrades necessary to continue to grow its level of service.
The amendment is the culmination of more than a year of work between the Port, the FAA, emergency response providers and Congressman Derek Kilmer. It still requires approval by the U.S. Senate, where Senator Maria Cantwell and Senator Patty Murray are key supporters. The Port is grateful for Congressman Kilmer’s year-long effort to pass the amendment, and also wants to acknowledge the support and assistance of Jim Buck of Joyce Emergency Planning and Prep , Senator Kevin Van De Wege, Representative Steve Tharinger, Representative Mike Chapman and the Washington Department of Transportation.