In Case You Missed It: Fayetteville City Council Member Urges Congress To Authorize Additional Flights At DCA To Improve Access To Nation’s Capital

In case you missed it, Fayetteville City Council member Kathy Jensen published an op-ed in The Fayetteville Observer, urging Congress to authorize additional flights to and from Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport (DCA).

Jensen highlights the significance of Fayetteville’s neighboring Fort Liberty, recognized as the largest U.S. military installation globally. She points out that despite this, military personnel at Fort Liberty lack a direct flight option to Washington, D.C., due to the federally imposed perimeter rule.

Jensen emphasizes that authorizing more flights at DCA would make travel from North Carolina to the nation’s capital more affordable and efficient, advancing The Tar Heel State’s growing prominence, providing better access for business leaders to federal policymakers, and creating business development opportunities, particularly for the large number of federal military contractors in the area.

Jensen expresses her appreciation to Congressmen Richard Hudson, Dan Bishop, and David Rouzer for their support in the U.S. House for the bipartisan Direct Capital Access Act and urges Senators Thom Tillis and Ted Budd to support the effort in the Senate.

Read the entire piece HERE and below:

Fort Liberty, Fayetteville Fliers Should Get A Straight Shot To D.C. But Old Rule An Obstacle
The Fayetteville Observer
Kathy Keefe Jensen
August 10, 2023

Fayetteville is the largest neighbor to one of the largest U.S. military installations in the world. Fort Liberty, its workforce, and all the businesses in our community who support the U.S. military mission are vital to national security.

But the only way anyone in our region can fly direct to Washington, DC is if the Golden Knights Parachute Team is jumping into Washington Nationals Stadium. If you want a direct flight but don’t want to jump out of airplane or have a 90-minute commute after your airplane lands, your only option is to drive to Raleigh, Charlotte or Wilmington for a direct flight into Reagan National Airport (DCA) because here are no direct options from flights from Fayetteville Regional Airport.

The federal government presently blocks DCA from adding additional flights due to the outdated Perimeter Rule which restricts the number of direct flights into DCA. DCA is the only airport in the country restricted by the Perimeter Rule. Because the Federal government follows an outdated mandate, it restricts price competition, resulting in North Carolinians having to pay more for airfare into DCA.

If you’ve driven to Raleigh (or Charlotte or Wilmington) and flown directly into DCA in recent years, you might have noticed something new at the airport, an entirely brand-new terminal built with federal taxpayer dollars. Airports typically, and logically, build new terminals when they want the additional infrastructure necessary to take on additional flights.

But, due to the outdated Perimeter Rule, the Federal government has spent taxpayer dollars to build a new terminal at DCA capable of handling new flights, but Federal policy is preventing DCA from taking new flights. 

New legislation, the Direct Capital Access Act, would authorize new flights into DCA. This legislation does not take away any existing flight options, it creates new options. It also does not guarantee Fayetteville Regional Airport would get a direct flight, but chances for more direct flight options into DCA will only happen if Congress authorizes more flight options.

I thank Congressmen Richard Hudson, Dan Bishop and David Rouzer for supporting this legislation in the U.S. House and strongly urge Senators Thom Tillis and Ted Budd to support it in the US Senate.

Authorizing additional flights at DCA will make travel from our state to our nation’s capital more affordable and more efficient overall. As North Carolina continues to grow in prominence, our business leaders require stronger access to federal policymakers and regulators. And considering the strong presence of federal military contractors in our area, our local economies would benefit through heightened business development opportunities. 

Kathy Keefe Jensen is a member of the Fayetteville City Council.


About CAA

CAA consists of diverse members from around the country and various industries, including transportation, general business groups, the small business sector, entrepreneurs and job creators, organizations focused on economic development and leaders in the civic and policy communities. 

Learn more about Capital Access Alliance HERE.