U.S. Rep. Rodney Alexander, R-Quitman, expressed his dismay over the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) furlough plans, which underscores the entity's poor financial planning and management.
"Despite being aware of sequester cuts for well over a year, the FAA gave Congress and the airline industry less than a week's notice about its implementation plans. The last minute disclosure that 15,000 air traffic controllers would be furloughed is a political stunt that is needlessly delaying 40 percent of U.S. flights. This inconvenience to the traveling public was completely avoidable, leading many to deem this as nothing more than a political stunt. Thankfully, the administration cannot hide behind the facts.
"In the past five years, the FAA's operations budget has increased by 10.4 percent while the number of domestic commercial flights has actually fallen 13 percent. Additionally, the FAA has sent approximately 18,000 employees to conferences located in cities such as Las Vegas giving validity to the argument that the FAA could and should re-prioritize how it spends its money. From the looks of it, the FAA forwent the opportunity to make a smart fiscal decision, opting instead to implement a strategy designed for maximum public impact."