Increase In Airline Security Fees May Be Passed On To Passengers

CNN is reporting that airline industry representatives are speaking out against a potential increase in security fees charged to airline passengers. The hike would take place in 2012 if President Obama's proposed budget is approved.

"We believe that aviation security is a U.S. government responsibility," said David Castelveter of the Air Transport Association of America, which represents most major airlines. "These costs should not be on the backs of airlines and their customers."

The Obama administration said the current fee— $2.50 for each leg of a trip, with a $5 maximum— captures only 36 percent of the aviation security cost, and that the increased fee will result in passengers paying "a majority" of the estimated cost of passenger and baggage screening.

The security fee was first imposed in 2002 and has not increased since then, the Transportation Security Administration said. In fiscal 2008, the fee generated approximately $2 billion.

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