A uniform security model for small airports across Australia proposed by the Federal Government is set to make it easier to grow the Busselton Margaret River Regional Airport into an international tourism and freight hub.
The Aviation Transport Security Amendment Bill 2018 passed the House of Representatives on Wednesday and, if implemented, would see airports adopt a transport security program from the Federal Government if they are perceived to be at lower risk of terrorist attack.
Currently, smaller airports are required to create tailored transport security plans at considerable expense.
Forrest MHR Nola Marino said the Bill was welcome news for plans to further develop the Busselton-Margaret River Regional Airport.
“It is an exciting and new development, and it has the potential to supercharge our region in terms of exporting the best-quality products to the rest of the world and bringing visitors directly to our beautiful South West region,” she said.
“We have to make sure that the future of the airport is not compromised by being overly burdened at this time by security requirements.” Shadow infrastructure, transport, cities and regional development minister Anthony Albanese said existing security arrangements were placing unacceptable administrative burdens on small airports.
“It’s important to note that most of these smaller airports are owned by local government,” he said.
“Local ratepayers pay sometimes substantial funds in terms of a proportion of a small rural or regional local government body as a percentage of their overall budget.
“Therefore, reducing the administrative burden on these airport operators is really common sense.” Home Affairs Minister Peter Dutton said red tape reduction would help regional airlines and airports save money and ensure Australia’s security framework remained responsive. “This will allow industry participants such as smaller regional airports to direct their finite resources towards implementing and maintaining robust security measures,” he said.
Source: Busselton Dunsborough Times