WASHINGTON, D.C. – Senator Tom Harkin (D-IA) on May 10th issued the following statement upon learning that the air traffic control tower at the Dubuque Airport would remain open until September 30, 2013. The decision was announced earlier today by the U.S. Department of Transportation. Dubuque was one of more than 100 control towers at small airports that would be have impacted by the across-the-board budget cuts known as sequestration. As a result of those cuts, the tower was slated to close in June.
“I applaud the action of the U.S. Department of Transportation to keep contract towers in operation through the end of the Fiscal Year, which impacts the Dubuque tower. Although there are procedures in place to maintain safety, we know that operations are optimal when the tower is open and proper staff is in place. I am hopeful that the Fiscal Year 2014 Appropriations measure will provide sufficient funding to keep these towers open in the long term.”