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Squawks & HeadlinesFAA Plans Possible Tower Closures to Cut $600 Million

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FAA Plans Possible Tower Closures to Cut $600 Million

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To prepare for the possibility of a budget sequestration on March 1, 2013, the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) is making plans to reduce its expenditures by approximately $600 million for the remainder of Fiscal Year 2013. Some busier facilities include: LVK, SAC, SQL, ISM, LAL, OPF, ORL, NEW, HXD, CLL, SGR and OSH. (www.faa.gov) More...

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mddickens
Mark Dickens 17
The old "gold watch" routine. What I think is hilarious is the idea that the Federal government (of all entities) is running such a tight ship that there isn't 7% fat somewhere. If anyone believes that, I have some swampland to sell them.
Chasera
Bob Chase 2
Since I'm a Realtor I'll list it for you. We could make millions!!!
boonejerry
Jerry Boone 0
they don't call them"control" towers for nothing. It will Take GA back to the good ole days.... I am for grass fields.
the FAA is like obama on steroids.
preacher1
preacher1 2
Well, I like a little concret or asphalt myself but a tower ain't needed with 1/2 dozen operations per day.
canuck44
John Donaldson 16
Another crock...politicians giving a worst case scenario to pressure other politicians. The FAA will actually have more money than they had last year. With the baseline budgeting scam, they will get an extra $960 over last years' $16 Billion if 6% is this years' number and $1.12 Billion if the number is 7% for fiscal 2013. From this projected budget they need to cut $600 Million. Give me 20 minutes I could do it without cutting any service but there would be lots of empty suits but full towers and radar rooms.
Ttchockey27
Ttchockey27 5
I agree with what they are doing here. Looking at it this way, why does OSH need a tower except for EAA? There is no commercial travel, and very few GA traffic. They could get away with no tower here. Not sure how the traffic is at the other airports though.
chalet
chalet 3
The FAA should take advantage of this situation to do some serious thinking about which towers should be shut down for ever. There are hundreds of towns with 5-10 GA aircraft movements a day which is a waste of hardly needed resources. And speaking about the military there are hundreds of BILLIONS being wasted every year in troublesome weapons systems like the F-22, F-35 both lemmons.
preacher1
preacher1 4
Well, KY ain't the only place that will get hit. The entire list was posted on FA a few days ago, and AR will lose 3 plus reduced service on one, not to mention a whole bunch of others. Old heads will remember the PATCO strike. That was for real as there were literally no people to fill them. Some of this is political posturing with gloom and doom. It will be interesting
bishops90
Brian Bishop 6
Good comments. Funny how ATC, Firemen, Police, Teachers, and Food Inspectors are always the first ones in jeopardy of losing jobs and cutting services.
Hogwash.
canuck44
John Donaldson 5
Doubly so considering fire services are almost exclusively local and state as are teachers and firemen.
preacher1
preacher1 3
Truthfully, we have all been spoiled but in all honesty, some are probably not needed. Busy hubs and Airports definitely; Centers, defintely. Light use????? Nite time, click a mic and you have lights. It might take some getting used to, as some seem to have been there forever, but after PATCO, some never reopened and nobody missed them. It will take some getting used to if it happens.
eacllc
Clyde Ensor 8
Who gives a shi....? It's a bunch of scare tactics.
preacher1
preacher1 1
The closer it gets to Friday, it appears that we are going to find out. Folks here are talking a % of fat as being no big deal, and that might be a good thing, but I heard one of the b'crats talking the other day and say that it could not be selective cuts but had to be overall, according to some federal law.
racinron
racinron 6
Stop supporting foreign countries that hate us and support your own people at home. This is ridiculous.
cm5299
Chuck Me 4
"We need to cut government spending!"
"Don't cut the things I like!"

And we wonder why we can't control our spending.
btweston
btweston 4
And government is too incompetent to do anything about it. Those congressmen are a bunch of evil you-know-whats. But not the guy I voted for!
cm5299
Chuck Me 3
Exactly.

Congress has an approval rating that's terrible. Yet the majority of them keep getting reelected.
JetMech24
JetMech24 4
Thanks to people that just vote their party, regardless of who it is.
evergreen3
Steve Krumholz 1
Everyone likes something that government does. These cuts will be very painful and they will hurt many people. Anyone who voted for an incumbent last November is just as guilty for this fiasco as the Members of Congress.
mament
Michael Ament 5
This is such BS! All the sequester does is cut the PLANNED INCREASE in spending! We will stil spend more next year even with the sequester. I vote FOR the sequester!
Navy65
Navy65 2
Useless control towers to eliminate in Florida & Georgia: Lake City, Bartow, Ocala, Naples, Boca Raton, Ormond Beach, St. Augustine. Cecil Field, New Smyrna Beach, North Perry, Leesburg, Panama City, Albert Whitted and Stuart. In Georgia: Valdosta, Albany & Athens. Closing these look-at-me-I'm-a-big-time-airport-now towers would help reduce the deficit.
MultiComm
Spencer McLennan 2
there are several Georgia airports that could get away without a control tower. It would put a little damper on some flight training efforts (having to go to PDK vs. AHN, CSG or MCN) however the practice would be good for the student but could "muddy up the water" of all the corporate traffic and make it less safe. IDK ... probably not going to happen as fast as they say regardless of intent.
flywm
flywm 2
Do any of the guys commenting on this page fly into GA airports for work? I'm talking non weekend warriors? This cut is going to put a lot of operators in jeopardy, when it comes to safe ops. APF, OPF and SAC are prime examples. Most all of the towers listed under FL are vital. If you've ever been out of your home town, you'd know that most all of the contract towers are needed. I just hope the warriors make damn good position reports.
yr2012
matt jensen 2
Back to vfr - daytime ops
bimjim
Jim Lynch 2
All of the airlines pay big Nav and other fees - per movement - passengers pay big "airport security" and other fees - per trip - (in addition to a river of other taxes and baggage fees), but if sequestration occurs the system gets severely crimped?

So where is all this money from airlines and passengers going to? Hopefully it is not almost all for "Administration" - to pay executives big bucks to do their usual nothing dance... is this where some of the Wall Street brokers moved to? Time for another investigation??
preacher1
preacher1 3
You mean you don't like the nightime?lol
dhnorthstar
David Holland 3
How about getting rid of mid-level management?
mament
Michael Ament 0
How about gwtting rid of OhBummer!
boughbw
Brian Bough 2
John Boehner? Yes, a terrific start.
rustybud
rustybud 2
I work with three guys who support the CT program for FAA and they're scared they'll be laid off as soon as today. As it turns out, we're moving our office down the block over the weekend, and I'm sure they're wondering whether they'll be told Monday morning to just collect their things and go. I work for another FAA program which may not be so vulnerable, but isn't untouchable.

On top of that, FAA unions are known to have told management they won't accept one day of Fed furlough until the cuts needed have been accomplished by FAA contractors layoffs. It's good for keeping their own jobs, but if the public understood just how bloated and dumb some of the FAA rank and file are it would see just how lucky we are to have a functioning air transportation system.

All of this mess has been caused by our POS POTUS to try and rid himself of Republican opposition for good. Thankfully enough, a single journalist has had enough integrity to out the whole affair for all to see. What he's doing (including releasing hundreds of criminal illegal aliens even befor the event) is more than shameful, even criminal, to lots of good and decent people.
Moviela
Ric Wernicke 2
How typical is the response to "living within their means" for Liberals to punish the electorate? Instead of closing towers and reducing necessary services for the safe conduction of travel the FAA must give every paycheck a haircut and maintain service levels. I say the bigger the paycheck, the more hair gets cut off as a percentage.

This is how you balance a budget.

This is all semantic antics anyhow. There is actually no reduction going to occur. What is happening is the rate of increase will be throttled back. (Aviation pun intended)

Almost every federal budget item will be more dollars than the year before.

My own Congresswoman has heard from me on this issue. Her only previous legislative work has been to sponsor bills to name Post Offices. It will be hard for her to work on a monetary issue. We all need to alert our representatives that failure to keep the country moving can result in unemployment. Theirs.
preacher1
preacher1 1
There are probably some contract and lite use towers that need to be closed, sequestration or not, but the biggest thing wrong with this whole mess is that it pretty much forces an across the borad cut, instead of forcing department heads to be like civilian CEO's and cut the fat. There is some needful stuff they do and then there is fat that has been created over the years that has become entrenched. It is not right to penalize everybody. The ones providing a needful service need to be left alone and unfurloughed; the rest, done away with. Those cabinet and department heads that can't do it should be replaced themselves. Congress shouldn't have to micro manage a government agency. Folks need to realize that the teat is out of milk.IMHO
TumblingBear
Rob Harrison 1
There are difinitely some towers on the California list that we could do without. I note Chino Tower didn't make the list. But Brackett? Riverside? I suspect this is a bluff.
Pilotguyr6
Pilotguyr6 1
Advocating Safety is primary to the FAA right... So yea lets fire most of the controllers who help make flying safer. Sounds about right.
genethemarine
Gene spanos 1
Operator Issues:
We support control over volume of take offs and landings:
We support federal legislation to give the Hubs [ such as ORD ] the power to refuse to schedule flights beyond its capacity - now !
Thank you.
tbpera
Tom Pera 1
love it! seems most of us agree on all this stuff.....amazing!
mpradel
Marcus Pradel 1
Just how is it necessary to cut only the visible aspects of these agencies when this is effectively a Budget Freeze instead of a Planned increase?

Marketing..
Pilotguyr6
Pilotguyr6 1
WI will only have a few towers in the state also.
b72s2jfk
rj sullivan 1
Mary, that swampland was already sold to Mr. Disney in Orlando FL in the 70s.
tbpera
Tom Pera 1
when we went out on strike in 1981, they closed a whole bunch of small VFR towers.... most stayed closed..
blake1023
blake1023 1
What makes anyone think User Fees are going to fix anything!
S27481
George Mattingly 1
Navy65 is on target ! They can close Martin State in Baltimore ( a contract tower), Hagerstown, MD, Lancaster, PA, York PA, Reading PA, Winston-Salem NC, Smyrna TN, the list goes on and on. With the price of fuel at $ 6.50+ a gallon - not much recreational flying going on
Popasan
Philip Weymouth Jr 1
Closing ILG would be great. Joey Greenville would have to go back to taking the train from Wilmington to The Cesspool of Corruption. We'd all save a ton! Phil Weymouth,Jr.
Saintelmo
Kevin Girard 1
Here's a concept, how about using the tax revenue off the aviation fuel sales for what it is intended for instead of dumping it into the general fund to subsidize other entitlement programs.
Saintelmo
Kevin Girard 1
Here's a concept, how about using the tax revenue off the aviation fuel sales for what it is intended for instead of dumping it into the general fund to subsidize other entitlement programs.
Kaptainkevin
Kaptainkevin 1
Then they are building a brand new tower in Cleveland... Spending millions when the old one looks brand new. Then United will probably close down that mini hub they got from the Continental merger!
Bearflight1
Mark Chapman 1
FAA should have shown some leadership years ago. We did fine in 80's when PATCO walked. Shut down some of the contract towers. They simply arent needed
Leo12656
Leonardo Lage 1
Glad to come to this site and see that, based on the comments I am reading, there is still logical and informed people in this country left.
soarby007
brent young 1
It's only a 2.4% cut in growth. If you lay off a controller one day a week isn't that 20%? This whole thing is hype. Every fsdo whines about being short handed. If they quit nitpicking they would be 20% overmanned.
Piper7656w
Vernon Parks 1
Need to cut FOREIGN AID AND FOOD STAMPS. End of statement.
we0209
William Jensen 1
THE SKY IS FALLING!!!!!!!!!!!!

What a bunch of boloney! I'm sick of the stupid games the various Federal agencies are playing right now with the "cuts" that aren't cuts, but a decrease in the increase in spending. B.S.
joelwiley
joel wiley 3
Are the targeted towers in democratic or republican districts? Just a thought
boughbw
Brian Bough 2
They should be.
JetMech24
JetMech24 -1
Should be what? Your comment makes no sense what-so-ever.
boughbw
Brian Bough 2
All of them. Every citizen should see that their member of Congress is responsible for this stupidity, without exception.
preacher1
preacher1 1
Well he has already said he would, but let's wait and see how fast he actually does.lol
canuck44
John Donaldson 1
This token Obama RINO thinks that BS baffles brains, but then he is enmeshed with like company in this Administration. The "cuts" are to be taken against projected built-in increases through the Baseline Budget scam we got from the Swimmer Kennedy. In all, the FAA is going to have a couple hundred million dollars more than last year. Likewise with the TSA and all the other agencies that actually perform a valuable service as a small percentage of their budget expenditures.

"Consultants" is another word for cronies and/or pay-offs to political friends and/or contributors. Expertise is not required. An organization should only need consultants if they are entering a new field of endeavor or current management is so weak that everything it touches turns to crap...the King Manure Touch. In this case they need a house cleaning.
JJ7
JJ Johnson 1
How much does one Mid-Air that rains body parts and flaming wreckage over 10 square miles cost? Just saying. Cut Obama and his Queen's Million dollar vacations and Foreign aid and this stupid Military Industrial Complex sustaining never ending terror war. Federal working class American employees are not the scape goat and solution to the mess in Washington District of Corruption get a grip people.
we0209
William Jensen 1
Groan....

Are you serious? Closing a few control towers & cutting hours in others isn't going to cause a ""mid-air that rains body parts and flaming wreckage over 10 square miles".

Yes, The One & his wife need to cut their travel, and yes, we need to cut back on foreign "aid", but seriously? You've bought the Kool-Aid being sold by the Federal bureaucrats in the FAA hook, line, and sinker.
blakerl
Larry Blaker 1
These cuts are unnecessary it's a small reduction in the overall FAA budget. The FAA leadership is playing politics. These cuts are coming sooner or latter no matter what. We can not keep running a Trillion dollar deficit every year, better to plan to do it now and cut the waste. There are better solutions but no the FAA leadership is playing scare tactics politics.
preacher1
preacher1 1
We must realize that this is a cut on new money for this year and not near the gloom/doom we are led to believe.Even the republicans have admitted it is but a small part and will take about 10 years to really get it back under control so we have to start somewhere. Pennies make $. Liberals remind me of unmannered kids at WalMart, throwing a fit if they can't have what they want. Unfortunatly they are getting in the majority.
dfitzg01
David FitzGerald 0
Another scare tactic fostered by the Obama administration. What B/S. I know of several small airports that get along very well w/o tower personnel. Planes take off and land with no safety problems.
BobChase
Bob Chase -1
What continues to drive me nuts is it was all Obama' s idea in 2011. How would you like this guy in the control tower on final with heavy traffic?
cmuncy
Chris Muncy 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Sugar Land Regional Airport (SGR), Lone Star Executive (KCXO) could close due federal cuts

This hits very close to home. KCXO is also home to an Air Guard unit.

http://abclocal.go.com/ktrk/story?section=news/local&id=9002880
twincessna
william koehler 0
Police fire teachers, now which ones are federally paid, none good guess. Despite Obama scare the nation tour not many are buying it. In addition it our area work of the hundreds of towers only a hand ful relie on federal money, most are state or city operated without federal monies for payroll. Centers and tracons , thats right they won't approve direct gps applications.
cmuncy
Chris Muncy 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Why close airports? FAA’s annual budget for ‘consultants’ is larger than sequestration cuts

The lawmakers proposed a better way to handle sequestration. “Before implementing furloughs, the FAA should review their $2.7 billion in non-personnel costs such as $500 million for consultants, and $200 million for supplies and travel,” congressional Republicans countered in a fact sheet.

http://washingtonexaminer.com/why-close-airports-faas-annual-budget-for-consultants-is-larger-than-sequestration-cuts/article/2522353
preacher1
preacher1 0
I think that Uncle Sugar may find out that his folks may not be as much interested in some parts of these as he thinks they are. Lots of airports out there with no commercial or military service or base. If an airport is GA only, why do it need a tower and even lightly used commercial don't really need one.
boughbw
Brian Bough -1
A Republican "fact sheet" from a newspaper so awful they have to try to give it away? Seriously?

MrAflac9916
Mr Aflac -5
Thanks Obama. Spending BILLIONS on military and drone attacks, and billions more on foreign oil. While letting the people of this country go to rust. No better than any Republican if you ask me.
SangLe
Sang Le 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

FAA: Sequester could close air traffic control towers

Congress faces a Friday deadline to stop a series of automatic spending cuts, known in Washington as the sequester, that pose a threat to jobs, school funding and other services in Texas.

The White House released a list of potential cuts, detailing how each state will be impacted if the $85 billion sequester takes effect.

http://www.click2houston.com/news/FAA-Sequester-could-close-air-traffic-control-towers/-/1735978/19076982/-/13y51mc/-/index.html
bashdan
Bash Dan 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Cuts could close 3 Ky. airport towers

Three Kentucky airport towers could close if automatic federal budget cuts take effect on March 1.

http://www.wkyt.com/wymt/home/headlines/Cuts-could-close-3-Ky-airport-towers-192963371.html
Fourpawphoto
Michael Ostrowski 0
(Duplicate Squawk Submitted)

Letter from FAA to close towers

This is going to create a huge headache for everyone.

http://www.faa.gov/news/updates/media/2013_02_22_10_00_10.pdf