- The Washington Times - Monday, February 25, 2013

Virginia lawmakers and air travel officials on Monday warned of long lines and even longer delays if looming federal spending cuts are not avoided.

Standing in the terminal of Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport, Rep. James P. Moran Jr., whose district includes the airport, said that the cuts, known as sequestration, “are not just impacting federal employees but will be felt at airports all across the country.”

“The cuts will lead to longer lines for travelers and [wait times for security] screenings of up to an hour,” he said.

Sequestration, set to kick in on March 1, will cut $600 million from the Federal Aviation Administration’s operations and facilities accounts, officials said.

It would also mean the furlough of more than 2,000 air-traffic controllers and 11-day furloughs for FAA employees this year.

Officials anticipate the effects could be felt by travelers as early as April 1.

“The airline industry is not shutting down. It’s just going to operate at a slower pace until we get our act together on a national level,” Mr. Moran said.