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Airline passenger fee to rise

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  • Currently passengers pay $2.50 for each leg of a trip
  • The fee hike would take place in 2012
  • The amount of the increase has not been determined
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WASHINGTON (CNN) -- A fee charged to every airline passenger to help pay for security would go up an undisclosed amount in 2012 if President Obama's proposed budget is approved.

Currently, passengers pay $2.50 for every leg of a trip, with a maximum of $5.

But the Obama administration said the fee captures only 36 percent of the cost of providing aviation security, and said the increased fee will result in passengers paying "a majority" of the estimated cost of passenger and baggage screening.

The airline industry has fought fee increases in the past and is likely to fight this one.

"We believe that aviation security is a U.S. government responsibility," said David Castelveter of the Air Transport Association of America, which represents most major airlines. "These costs should not be on the backs of airlines and their customers."

The security fee was first imposed in 2002 and has not increased since then, the Transportation Security Administration said. In fiscal 2008, the fee generated approximately $2 billion.

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