House committee to review FAA flight tower consolidation plans

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The transportation committee's Aviation Subcommittee will meet to review the FAA's plans for considering the "age and deteriorating condition of FAA facilities, the state of the federal budget, the need for cost savings, expected facility and infrastructure needs with the implementation of NextGen, and consolidation and realignment planning requirements included in the recently enacted FAA Modernization and Reform Act of 2012 (Reform Act)," the panel announced Wednesday.

The committee said the FAA currently operates 402 flight towers, and the agency has met "parochial political resistance from Congress, and at times, its own workforce" in its previous consolidation efforts.

Witnesses who are scheduled to testify at Thursday's hearing include the FAA's Chief Operating Officer for its Air Traffic Organization David Grizzle, Department of Transportation Assistant Inspector General for Auditing and Evaluation Lou Dixon and National Air Traffic Controllers Association President Paul Rinaldi.

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