The U.S. Department of Transportation is delaying the closure of five air traffic control towers, meaning that five Maryland airports — including Frederick Municipal Airport — will remain open until June 15.
Nearly 150 federally contracted air traffic control towers were slated to close as early as this month because of federal budget sequestration, which has cut nearly $600 million from the Federal Aviation Administration.
Members of Maryland’s congressional delegation wrote to Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood this week asking him to delay the closure so lawmakers could continue efforts to end the sequestration.
“The decision to postpone these tower closures is a hard-fought important step in ensuring Maryland’s safety and economic security,” said Sen. Barbara A. Mikulski (D) of Baltimore in a statement Friday.
The Hagerstown Regional Airport, Easton/Newnam Field, Martin State Airport and Salisbury-Ocean City Wicomico Regional Airport will also stay open until June.