Frederick, MD – Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association President and CEO Craig Fuller issued the following statement Friday in response to the sequestration cuts proposed by the Federal Aviation Administration:
“The Aircraft Owners and Pilots Association (AOPA) has, since 1939, made flight safety its top priority. We are therefore deeply concerned that the FAA’s planned $600 million in sequestration cuts will compromise aviation safety and severely damage the efficiency of general aviation flight operations nationally.
“In a letter handed down this morning by Department of Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood, the agency said that the FAA may enact a one-day furlough per pay period for ‘the vast majority of our 47,000 employees,’ close 100 control towers, and shut down night operations at 60 more towers. The FAA established those towers after determining they were necessary to ensure safe operations at those airports. Closing them or reducing their hours of operation is reckless.
“I am astounded that our elected leaders have put air safety in such jeopardy, and I call upon those involved in the sequestration debate to quickly reach sensible solutions that will maintain an aviation system that is the envy of the world.
“If sequestration takes effect March 1, AOPA will continue to work with the FAA and members of the U.S. Congress to maintain the safety standards that our nearly 400,000 AOPA members have come to expect. General aviation, and AOPA members, play a vital role in our nation’s transportation system, and a safe operating environment is the lynchpin to the success of that system. We will be contacting our members to both keep them informed and to request their support in taking and demanding corrective action."
- AOPA -