I went over to the FAA today to meet with Kate Lang, Acting Associate Administrator for Airports. Debby McElroy, our Executive VP for Policy and External Affairs, came along. This is a regular meeting we have scheduled to discuss a wide variety of issues we are working on.
When the meeting ended, Kate asked us if we would come with her to a gathering of all the employees in the Airports division in D.C. and also, via phone, those around the country. The meeting was called by FAA Administrator Randy Babbitt to congratulate the Airports folks for the outstanding job they did in moving stimulus money out the door and putting it to work. I was honored to be asked to come along and even more honored to be asked to say something.
“Day in and day out,” I said, “the FAA Airports office works hard to ensure the safety and efficiency of the air transportation system and, in so doing, make it possible for people to travel and business to be completed. In the past year, they have done an absolutely marvelous job of getting the stimulus act money out the door.” Finally, I reminded them that the purpose of the stimulus was to create jobs and that by getting that money out the door; they helped make it possible for thousands of families to have work and support themselves.
There is a lot of argument these days over how to create jobs, what works and what doesn’t. What we do know is that the airport initiative in the stimulus did work and did create jobs.