News Summary: FAA funds airport towers on old data

News Summary: FAA funded airport control towers using safety data from 3 decades ago

Associated Press

OLD DATA: The Federal Aviation Administration has been using 30-year-old data on aircraft collisions to justify the cost of operating many of the control towers, even though accident rates have improved significantly over that time.

NOT NEEDED: Had the FAA used more current data, it's probable that some low-traffic airport towers operated by private contractors would no longer have met the agency's criteria for funding, industry officials say. Members of Congress pressure the FAA to open, not close, new towers at airports in their states.

CLOSURES NOW: Starting this weekend, control towers at scores of small airports are to begin shutting down because of government-wide automatic spending cuts.

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