In the News

This week, the U.S. House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee rolled U.S. Rep. Neal Dunn’s, R-Fla., proposal on overbooked flights into the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) reauthorization.

Back in April, a Web video of Dr. David Dao being forcibly removed from an overbooked flight garnered national attention. Later that month, Dunn filed the  “Secure Equity in Airline Transportation (SEAT)" Act. The proposal “requires the secretary of Transportation to revise federal rules governing how airlines treat travelers with confirmed tickets on over-booked flights" and ensures “airlines cannot involuntarily remove a person from their seat on an over-booked flight simply to make room for another passenger – airline employee or otherwise.”

The committee agreed with much of Dunn’s proposal, making it an unfair business practice to remove a passenger against their will if they are already on the plane, checked in before the deadline and have confirmed reservations. Dunn’s legislation was brought into the “21st Century Aviation Innovation, Reform, and Reauthorization Act."(21st Century AIRR Act).

House Transportation and Infrastructure Chairman Bill Shuster, R-Penn., thanked Dunn for his proposal. 

“Airline passengers deserve to be treated with courtesy and respect, and if you’ve already boarded your flight, you shouldn’t have to worry about getting removed from the plane,’” Schuster said. “This commonsense, consumer-focused policy included in the 21st Century AIRR Act echoes the work done on this issue by Dr. Dunn earlier this year. I want to thank him for working to ensure the American flying public comes first.”

“If you’re seated on the plane, you should stay on the plane,” Dunn said on Wednesday. “This simple change will give Americans reassurance they will not be dragged off a plane, and it will lead to airlines sorting out over-booking before travelers take their seats. I appreciate Chairman Shuster and the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee for their support.”

When Dunn brought out his bill, his office stressed that the proposal ensures law enforcement can still remove dangerous passengers. 

First elected to Congress in 2016 and picking up an open seat, Dunn sits on three House committees--Agriculture;  Science, Space, and Technology; and Veterans' Affairs. Dunn represents much of the Big Bend and parts of the Panhandle.