Towers in Gary, Columbus get reprieve from closure

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Air traffic control towers at airports in Gary and Columbus that were slated to close this month due to automatic federal spending cuts have received a temporary reprieve from the Federal Aviation Administration.

The two were among 149 airports where towers were scheduled to close beginning this weekend. But the FAA said Friday that the closings have been delayed until mid-June because of legal challenges to the closures.

Gary-Chicago airport director Steve Landry and Columbus Regional Airport director Brian Payne say the delay gives them more time to examine their options, ranging from seeking local funding to making air controllers city employees.

Of the nation's 5,000 public airports, only about 10 percent have control towers.

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