A group of Republican and Democratic senators is backing legislation that would block the Federal Aviation Administration from eliminating funding for air traffic control towers, including 6 in Connecticut. Senator Richard Blumenthal says the legislation would make $50 million available in the FAA budget.
Danbury Airport Manager Paul Estefan says the funding would be enough for the rest of the fiscal year. He adds that the FAA hasn't said if the cuts go through when the towers will reopen, if at all.
Blumenthal says the cuts are preventable because the money is there. Danbury Municipal Airport is among the 6 in Connecticut with towers that could close next month if the automatic budget cuts go through.
Blumenthal says the measure also makes clear that contract tower programs are subject to the same 5 percent budget cut as other programs in the FAA's budget. The FAA is seeking a 75 percent spending cut at contract air traffic control towers.