Alaskan Congressman Don Young received positive news today from the U.S. Custom and Border Protection (CBP) that they have reversed their decision to deny increased international travel to the Fairbanks International Airport by limiting landing rights for Air North -- a Yukon Territory based airline service working closely with Holland America to bring visitors to Alaska. The decision comes only days after Congressman Young wrote CBP Assistant Commissioner Susan T. Mitchell asking the agency to reconsider their position, citing numerous reasons (click here to view the letter).
"I am glad to hear that CBP got the message loud and clear and found room to make this right," said Rep. Young. "The permanent addition of three CBP staff to Fairbanks International Airport, without affecting other international travel, is a victory for not only Fairbanks but our state's entire tourism industry -- laying the foundation for substantially greater travel to the Interior. It was pretty clear to me that CBP's original decision was shortsighted."
The joint effort between the Alaska Delegation and Governor Parnell to seek reversal of the CBP decision began earlier this summer when the Fairbanks Convention and Visitors Bureau brought the issue to their attention. The unified efforts between all parties represented much more than two seasonal flights to Fairbanks, but larger issues surrounding one of Alaska's greatest industries.