With funding for the Palm Springs International Airport control tower project now in limbo, Congresswoman Mary Bono Mack (CA-45) sent the following letter to the Chairmen of the House and Senate Transportation Committees:
July 25, 2011
The Honorable Jay Rockefeller, Chairman
Senate Committee on Commerce, Science and Transportation
531 Hart Senate Office Building
Washington, DC 20510
The Honorable John L. Mica, Chairman
House of Representatives Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure
2165 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515
Dear Chairmen Rockefeller and Mica:
Today, as we all know too well, our nation is facing unprecedented fiscal challenges that if left unresolved could have serious consequences for all Americans. That's why I believe it's more important than ever for our leaders in Washington to find common ground on the difficult issues which threaten to undermine our economy and the future prosperity of our nation. As someone with a strong interest in transportation matters, I strongly urge you to work together to pass meaningful Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) authorization legislation that can end up on the President's desk and become law. With unemployment holding stubborn at 9.2 percent in America and 12.1 percent in California, we simply can't afford to have more people losing their jobs and critically important public projects grinding to a halt because of inside-the-beltway bickering. While the policy issues which separate the House and Senate are understandable, the inability of Congress to find a reasonable political compromise is not.
Because of this standoff, airport projects around the nation are now in jeopardy, including the new FAA control tower at Palm Springs International Airport, which serves more than 1 million people in Southern California. Despite passage of a stop gap funding bill in the House, the Senate has not followed through yet and work on this much needed project came to an abrupt halt this week. Today, it stands about 50 percent finished but 100 percent needed by the people who live in my district.
As leaders that I have long respected, I am asking you to please to put aside your differences and reach an agreement that best serves our nation and puts Americans back to work again. I recognize that we face many difficult challenges in the 112th Congress, but coming up with a common sense FAA reauthorization bill should not be one of them. Thank you for all of your hard work, and please let me know if I can assist you in any way.
MARY BONO MACK
Member of Congress