Airlines for America (A4A), the airline trade organization, has praised a bill introduced on April 15th by Senator Roy Blunt (R-MO) that will allow federal employees like air traffic controllers, to continue to offer “vital services” during the budget sequestration. The bill called the “Essential Services Act of 2013” asks for protection of American jobs and public safety by ensuring “essential” federal employees continue to provide vital services – including food inspections, control tower operations, and border security.
“There’s no reason the president’s sequester should compromise American jobs or public safety. This bill will help ensure the Obama Administration spends taxpayers’ hard-earned dollars in a way that prioritizes our nation’s economy, protects private sector jobs, and defends our national security,” said Blunt on his website.
“There is absolutely no reason why sequestration cuts should wreak havoc for airline passengers and shippers, the very people who fund two-thirds of the FAA’s budget,” echoed A4A president and CEO Nicholas E. Calio in a statement. “The FAA applied a similar approach during the two-week FAA shutdown in 2011 without impacting passengers, and we would expect nothing less now. We commend Sen. Blunt for his continued leadership, and encourage bipartisan support for this bill, which will ensure the 2 million customers and 50,000 tons of cargo that fly every day are not negatively or punitively impacted by unnecessary cuts.”