Airports brace for delays as FAA budget cuts go into effect

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wwltv.com

Posted on April 23, 2013 at 6:15 AM

Updated Tuesday, Apr 23 at 6:21 AM

WWLTV.com
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NEW ORLEANS - Airports around the country braced for delays as across the board budget cuts hit the Federal Aviation Administration.

Thousands of employees were furloughed to deal with the mandatory cuts.

Forced spending cuts that were delayed on January 1  went into effect on March 1, meaning that many federal agencies, including the FAA, had to cut a big chunk from their budgets.

Due to the $600 million cut, 15,000 air traffic controllers are forced to take a day off every two weeks.

Major airlines are suing the FAA to postpone the furloughs, but the administration said it's the only way to cut the money from it's budget.

Big airports, like Los Angeles International, have reported over three hours of delays.

Many realize the importance of the role of air traffic controllers and said it's impossible for things to move smoothly with so many of them being furloughed.

"Somewhere that delay has to be absorbed... whether it's on the ground before they depart or whether it's an airborne holding...somehow, someway that aircraft is going to take a delay in order to keep some piece of the operation moving," said National Air Traffic Controllers Association Vice President Victor Santore

Some feel the furloughs are a political game, and President Barack Obama wants passengers to feel the impact of the cuts so that they will complain to their elected officials.

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