FAA Announces Columbia Regional Airport Control Tower will Remain Open

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COLUMBIA - Don Elliott, Airport Manager for Columbia Regional Airport received the following statement from the FAA this afternoon -

Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood announced today that DOT has determined that the recently enacted Reducing Flight Delays Act of 2013 will allow the FAA to transfer sufficient funds to end employee furloughs and keep the 149 low activity contract towers originally slated for closure in June open for the remainder of fiscal year 2013. The FAA will also put $10 million towards reducing cuts and delays in core NextGen programs and will allocate approximately $11 million to partially restore the support of infrastructure in the national airspace system.

"This is very good news for air service as a whole", stated Elliott. "This retains a layer of safety for the aviation industry which fits our primary goal at Columbia Regional Airport of safety."

The notice does indicate that the funding will keep the towers open through September of this year. It does not indicate what may happen in October.