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FAA to slash $600 million from budget

By control on February 22, 2013

In preparation for the possible budget sequestration March 1, the Federal Aviation Administration announced a plan Friday for $600 million in spending cuts during fiscal year 2013.

The FAA is considering furloughs of one day per pay period for the majority of its 47,000 employees until the end of the fiscal year in September; closing more than 100 air traffic control facilities; eliminating the overnight shift at more than 60 facilities; and reducing preventive maintenance for air traffic control equipment.

As a result of the furloughs and prolonged equipment outages resulting from fewer technicians, travelers should expect delays, wrote FAA administrator Michael Huerta and secretary Ray LaHood in a letter addressed to “aviation colleagues.”

Huerta and LaHood also wrote that aviation safety employees will undergo furloughs.

Furloughs and facility shutdowns will begin in April.

“This letter is just the beginning of what will be an ongoing dialogue between FAA, our unions and the airspace users to make the best decisions to try to reduce the negative impact to travelers,” they wrote.

A meeting will be scheduled next week to “enable you to bring forward your additional questions, concerns and suggestions,” according to the letter.