Weather Service employees balk at privatizing idea
Posted September 26, 2011
Raleigh, N.C. — Workers at the National Weather Service said Monday that worried about a proposal to privatize.
The agency's budget is about $1 billion a year, and some conservatives in Washington, D.C., say the government should sell off the service.
The Weather Service creates forecasts with data from satellites and weather stations. Those forecasts are essential to airlines, agriculture, construction and other industries.
Employees met in Raleigh Monday to voice their concerns.
"We have our forecast out there on the web every day. People can use it. Our radar's out there on the web every day," said Bill Hopkins, vice president of National Weather Service Employees. "People would have to start searching for it, and there's a possibility people would have to start paying to get the data they're already paying for."
Hopkins said the Weather Service costs each U.S taxpayer about $3 a year.