FAA changes Special Issurance medical certification

A major change has been made to the medical certification process for several common diagnoses that previously required a special issuance and a review process by the FAA prior to issuing a medical certificate. According to a report at EAA.org, under the new policy applicants with arthritis, asthma, glaucoma, chronic hepatitis C, hypertension, hypothyroidism, migraine and chronic headache, pre-diabetes, and renal cancer can receive their medical certificates directly from their AME.

Aviation groups urge White House to exempt controllers from furloughs

WASHINGTON, D.C. — As the FAA begins furloughing air traffic controllers, 11 aviation organizations have asked the White House to assure the FAA it will have enough money to prevent further furloughing of controllers.

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Pilots file suit to stop controller furloughs

Pilots and an airline group have filed a lawsuit to stop the federal government from cutting work hours for air traffic controllers, saying the furloughs will lead to travel delays of up to an hour across the country. A report in the Los Angeles Times notes that the lawsuit asks the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia Circuit to prevent job furloughs called for under sequestration. The report quotes Nicholas E. Calio, president and chief executive of Airlines for America, as saying: “The FAA plan is irresponsible and unnecessary.”

Senate committee questions tower closings

WASHINGTON, D.C. — A bipartisan group of 30 senators have sponsored a bill to prevent the FAA from closing any air traffic control tower in fiscal years 2013 or 2014, while the chairman of the Senate committee concerned with aviation warns all the progress made by the FAA is at risk because of sequestration.

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Congressional leaders express safety concerns about tower closings

Washington, D.C. – Leaders of the House Committee on Transportation and Infrastructure and the Senate Committee on Commerce, Science, and Transportation sent a bipartisan letter today to the head of the Department of Transportation and the FAA expressing disappointment with the FAA’s “unprecedented decision” to close 149 air traffic control contract towers to meet the sequester’s budget reduction requirements.

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Sequestration’s silver lining

The news last week that the FAA will delay closing 149 contract control towers should come as a bit of a relief to the folks at SUN ’n FUN, since Lakeland-Linder Regional Airport was among the first slated to close.

That meant SUN ’n FUN had to come up with the money to pay controllers during the week of the fly-in. The FAA’s latest decision, however, doesn’t let SUN ’n FUN off the hook.

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FAA delay tower closures

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The FAA will delay the closures of all 149 federal contract air traffic control towers until June 15.

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Do we need this control tower?

There is a lot of chatter about the pending tower closures. Yet I don’t hear anyone asking, “Do we need this control tower?”

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Airports sue over tower closures

The Associated Press is reporting that several airports have asked a federal court to stop the FAA’s plan to close 149 contract air traffic control towers, accusing the agency of violating federal law meant to ensure major changes at airports do not erode safety. Central Illinois Regional Airport in Bloomington, Ill., has joined other airports, including those in Spokane Airports in Washington state, and the operators of Florida airports in Naples, Ormond Beach and Punta Gorda. The court combined the suits into a single case Thursday.


Study says FAA could save $1 billion

As the FAA prepares to close 149 air traffic control towers as part of more than $600 million in spending cuts required by the sequester, a new Reason Foundation study shows how the FAA could save $1 billion a year by consolidating air traffic control centers and Terminal Radar Approach Control (TRACON) facilities.

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