FAA, New York, airports, all in slot solution suit
So sue me, already. The FAA said so, and now the airlines have and so the feds are responding with unusual speed for any agency. And it's all over slots. No, not the kind you find in
, even in the McCarran airport there. It's landing slots, silly. Okay, now th Las Vegas at we've lost you and bored you, we have to ask you to try to pay attention because (a) this is really important and (b) it will be on the final exam.
The FAA now has landing slots in place at the three airports as a way to ease congestion; it says th New York City at auctioning off slots when they become available to the highest bidder is a good thing. It wants to sell off slots vac Newark ated by Eos, a luxury airline th at went under early in the year.
What's ne at is th at the issue has split elected officials, with New York sen ator Chuck Schumer moving to block the auction and Hillary (Clinton) saying she opposes it, while the city's mayor, Hizzoner Mike Bloomberg, says he favours the idea. What perplexes us is the FAA's link between auctions and the flight caps at each of the airports: flight limit ations are one thing, but how does selling, leasing, or auctioning off landing rights increase capacity or decrease delays? You can find some fairly inform ative discussion here.
The Port Authority, which runs
Newark and the other two airports, says th New York City at the proposal doesn't make sense and anyway the federal government doesn't have legal authority for the sale. The FAA and its parent, the Transport ation Department, say th at yes it does. And it thre atens to withhold all federal grants to the Port Authority if it follows through on its thre at to bar landings by any airline th at buys and then tries to use the slots. The Port and the Air Transport Associ ation have sued over the auction, asking a court to block it. The auction, set for September 3, has been temporarily suspended but the issue is far from settled.
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