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Public Statements

Reducing Flight Delays Act of 2013

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. COSTA. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in support of legislation to provide the U.S. Secretary of Transportation with the flexibility to transfer certain funds to prevent reduced operations and staffing of the Federal Aviation Administration. While it is imperative that the U.S. Congress consider and pass legislation to replace the entirety of the sequester, this legislation will help ensure the safety and efficiency of our nation's air transportation system.

Specifically, I rise to affirm the intent of this legislation that grants the Secretary of Transportation the ability to use unobligated balances of the Airport Improvement Program account to halt the furloughs of air traffic controllers, to maintain the midnight air traffic control tower shift at airports across the country including Fresno-Yosemite International Airport, and to prevent the closure of 149 contract air traffic control towers including Castle Airport's contract air traffic control tower. Maintaining service at all contract and non-contract air traffic control towers is central to the authority provided in this bill to ensure the safety of our air transportation system.

Many Members of Congress have expressed concerns over the closure of contract towers, reduced service at non-contract towers, and furloughs of air traffic controllers, all of which contribute to the overall safety of our nation's air transportation system. The safety and efficiency of our skies have been put at risk and it has become incumbent upon the Congress to direct this authority to the Secretary of Transportation.

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