Air-control facilities at the Boca Raton and North Perry airports are among 149 around the country that will be forced to close next month as a result of federal budget cuts through September, the Federal Aviation Administration announced on Friday.
The closures will be phased in over four weeks.
South Florida members of Congress pointed to the closures as evidence of the damage done by cuts known as a “sequester.”
“We’re seeing the real, local impacts of the mindless across-the board budget cuts known as the sequester with this control tower closure,” said U.S. Reps. Lois Frankel, D-West Palm Beach, and Ted Deutch, D-Boca Raton. “It’s time for Congress to come together and solve the sequester.
“On behalf of our constituents we will continue to fight to make sure planes coming in and out of Boca Raton Airport are safe.”
The 149 closures are in small or mid-size airports. Larger airports also are expected to feel the pinch as the FAA forces air-traffic controllers to take furloughs, or unpaid leave.
“We will work with the airports and the operators to ensure the procedures are in place to maintain the high level of safety at non-towered airports,” said FAA Administrator Michael Huerta.
The FAA spared 24 contract towers that were previously slated for closure because that would have “a negative impact on the national interest,” the agency said.
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