Gottheimer pushes for FAA funding to fix air traffic controller shortage
The week between Christmas and New Year’s Day is expected to be another record-breaking travel period.
Ahead of the holidays, Rep. Josh Gottheimer is warning of an air traffic controller shortage at United States airports. The congressman was at Newark Liberty International Airport on Tuesday pushing for bipartisan funding for the Federal Aviation Administration.
Gottheimer says there is a 3,000-person shortage in America’s air traffic control towers. He says this causes delays and raises safety concerns with too many planes and not enough people to direct them.
Gottheimer says that in the tristate area alone staffing is at just 54% of what it should be.
"We simply can't afford to kick the can down the road on filling far too many air traffic controller positions which could lead to delays,” Gottheimer said. "We need to get a bipartisan deal now to fund the FAA. No more delays, no more government shutdowns, no more extremists playing political games with the safety of the skies."
The congressman says the funding needs to come by Jan. 7. He says that if the government shuts down, furloughs at the FAA could make the problem worse.