(WTNH) -- Senator Richard Blumenthal unveiled a plan to help keep air traffic control towers open at small airports across the state Monday.
The turbulence, since the FAA announcement of closing contracted air traffic control towers, including six regional airports in Connecticut, is not easing up.
Now, Sen. Blumenthal is co-sponsoring a bi-partisan bill to block the Federal sequestration automatic cuts to the FAA. His mission is to protect jobs and air safety.
"They are unnecessary because the FAA has the money to continue these air control towers," Sen. Blumenthal said. They are unwise because they endanger public safety and local economies.
Representatives of the state's aviation industry joined the Senator at Brainard Airport standing firm in support.
"A 75 percent cut to this program when other FAA programs are facing a five percent cut is really misguided and certainly targeted this program very unfairly," said Kevin Dillon.
Flight instructor Terry Keller warns air traffic controllers are crucial in smaller airports, where pilots of aircrafts such as helicopters and private jets are trying to maneuver the air space.
"At an airport where there's not a control tower where it used to be, there's going to be a higher level of risk through the reduce level of services as the pilots all try to mix together," Keller said.
Sen. Blumenthal is pushing for a vote to restore the funding for air traffic control towers, possibly as soon as in the next 48 hours.
Without it, closure is slated to begin April 7th.
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Hosed-by-the-system | March 19 2013 4:45pm
instead of cutting ATC people which we NEED and keep general aviation from making cuts ( I work in general aviation and because of the head up butt government on the sequester, our hours are cut at work) why dont the incompetent government do something about the over charging by MILLIONS that goes on between the friggin venders and the government?? Like charging $1650.00 for a bearing part that is in inventory for $7.61 that goes to a CH47 helicopter....there are thousands of items that are overcharged and NOTHING is done about it...NOTHING.....the same for the over charged healthcare system, which is ANOTHER story..........
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