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Bush budget proposal submitted to Congress, privatized air traffic control to be examinedBush budget proposal submitted to Congress, privatized air traffic control to be examined

Outlining his administration's priorities to a joint session of Congress last night, President George W. Bush stated, "Year after year in Washington, budget debates seem to come down to an old, tired argument: on one side, those who want more government, regardless of the cost; on the other, those who want less government, regardless of the need. We should leave those arguments to the last century and chart a different course."

Although transportation was not specifically mentioned in his address last evening, the 207-page budget plan titled "A Blueprint for New Beginnings," submitted to Congress this morning, recommends full funding for aviation at the "firewall" level of $13.3 billion, $725 million above the current funding level. In addition, the proposal contains language committing the administration to working with Congress and the aviation community "to develop a plan of action for improving the nation's aviation record, and in particular to examine the success that various nations, such as Canada, have experienced with individual air traffic control systems owned and operated by private companies."

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