One day after the president of the United States signed a bill regarding sequestration, Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport Director Barry Centini scoffed at the notion his airport would be one of the casualties of the potential across-the-board spending cuts.
On Wednesday, Barack Obama signed the Sequestration Transparency Act of 2012, which requires him to provide details within 30 days on how sequestration – severe budget cuts to most federal agencies – would be implemented if enacted on Jan. 2. The legislation also requires the directors of federal agencies, such as the Federal Aviation Administration, to develop a plan and submit it to Congress, detailing how they would deal with such cuts.
According to Todd Hauptli, the senior executive vice president of the American Association of Airport Executives, the FAA is still developing a plan for how it would cope with the projected $1.35 billion, or nine percent, cut from its annual budget. However, a study done by the American Center for Progress – a liberal think-tank – suggests the administration likely would have to close more than 100 U.S. airports, including the Wilkes-Barre/Scranton International Airport, to decrease its expenditures and meet the budget reduction.
Despite all of that, Mr. Centini says he isn’t concerned about the airport’s future.