GOLDEN TRIANGLE, Miss. – (WCBI) The Federal Aviation Administration announced plans today to reduce their expenditures by $600 million a year.
Saving money will come in the form of furloughs and reduction of operations. 47,000 workers will face one furlough day per pay period. There is also a possibility that air traffic control operations at 60 facilities across the country will be closed. Included on the list airports in our viewing are Tupelo Regional and Golden Triangle Regional Airports.
Just when the situation seemed bleak for the Columbus Air Force Base, this news made their situation worse. The same day the budget cuts are set to take effect, is the same day renovations are set to begin on the main runway at CAFB.
13 planes are supposed to use GTR’s runway. Without air traffic control, those plans fly into the wind.
“For normal operations at the Golden Triangle Regional Airport, we would still be able to operate at a smaller, slower tempo, which would still maintain a level of safety. Our main concern would be the impact on Columbus Air Force Base. Columbus Air Force Base is planning on the first of March of putting a dozen air planes their to perate to help them continue to produce students while their main runway is closed. They would not be able to do that if your tower was closed,” says GTRA Executive Director Mike Hainsey.
If President Obama and Congress do not reach a compromise by the end of the month, cutbacks at the Federal Aviation Administration will begin sometime in April.