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Heading to MSP airport? Don't forget to pack plenty of patience

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The Federal Aviation Administration has begun furloughing air traffic controllers, safety inspectors and other employees at the Minneapolis-St. Paul International Airport, WCCO reports.

Travelers should expect more delays and longer security lines, but MSP officials told Minnesota Public Radio on Friday that they don’t expect major problems.

"In talking to the local FAA officials, we're pretty confident that it won't have major impacts here, at least not to the extent that it will at some other airports across the country," airport spokesman Pat Hogan told MPR. "But it is a concern. They'll have fewer employees."

Fearing long delays in travel, two airline trade associations and the Air Line Pilots Association filed a lawsuit last week against the FAA over its decision to cut air traffic controllers up to one day every two weeks.

The planned furloughs, or unpaid days off, are a result of the $85 billion in automatic federal government budget cuts known as the sequester.

Click here for flight status information.

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