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Airports, Concessionaires Should Cooperate on New Terms, FAA Official Says

A Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) official said Wednesday that airports that find concessionaires in default on leases, without attempting to work with those tenants to mitigate financial challenges using CARES Act money, are “on the wrong track.”

In the weekly “Survival and Revival” call hosted jointly by the Airport Restaurant & Retail Association (ARRA) and the Airport Minority Advisory Council (AMAC), FAA Associate Administrator for Airports Kirk Shaffer said the U.S. Congress clearly intended airports to work with stakeholders to jointly navigate recovery.

The federal Coronavirus Aid, Relief, and Economic Security Act (CARES Act), provided roughly $10 billion in relief funds for airports in the United States. In guidance issued last month, the FAA noted there were few limits on how airports could use the funds, but urged airports to consider the “changed circumstances created by the public health emergency,” among other factors, when making a decision to renegotiate rent terms with tenants.

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