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Defense Communities 360 Headlines

List of Candidates to Replace Hagel Includes Familiar Names

  • November 24, 2014
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Following Monday’s surprise announcement that President Obama had accepted the resignation of Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel after less than two years in his post, a number of candidates to succeed Hagel have emerged. The top tier of possible replacements includes three people with extensive experience at the highest echelons of the Pentagon — Michèle Flournoy, Ashton Carter and Robert Work. Flournoy, CEO of the Center for a New American Security, and Carter, former deputy defense secretary, both were on previous short lists to replace former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta …

McCain May End Closed Markups for Authorization Bill

  • November 24, 2014
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The Senate Armed Services Committee’s markup of the defense authorization bill may be open to the public next year, Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.), who is expected to take the gavel for the panel in the 114th Congress, said last week. “I lean towards it, but I want to get the sense of all the members of the committee,” said McCain. McCain has previously stated there is no reason to hold the markup in a closed session. Before going ahead, though, he said he wants to make sure a majority of the committee supports the move, reported CQ Roll Call …

Local, State Initiatives Advance to Shield Letterkenny Army Depot from Cuts

  • November 24, 2014
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Officials in south central Pennsylvania are moving ahead with multiple initiatives to strengthen Letterkenny Army Depot and the region in the event of a future BRAC. At this point, though, L. Michael Ross, president of the Franklin County Area Development Corp., is confident Letterkenny’s immediate future is secure. “Right now Letterkenny is very stable with everything going on in the world,” Ross, who also serves as chairman of Team Letterkenny, told the Franklin County Council of Governments last week …

Biomass Plant Diversifies Army’s Portfolio of Renewables

  • November 24, 2014
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The 60-megawatt biomass plant at Fort Drum, N.Y., runs 24 hours a day powered by large quantities of residue from the harvest of timber in New York’s North Country. About 85 percent of the plant’s fuel mix is logging residue — primarily treetops and branches — with wood products reclaimed from demolition sites making up much of the balance, according to Larry Richardson, CEO of ReEnergy Holdings. A small amount comes from shredded tires …

Fayetteville Workshop Looks at Transition Issues for Military Families

  • November 24, 2014
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Last week’s fifth annual Forward March conference in Fayetteville, N.C., focused on ways to support military families in transition. Military families are particularly concerned about finding employment and healthcare after separating, according to Joyce Raezer, executive director of the National Military Family Association. Involuntary separations precipitated by spending cuts can add to the anxiety level. “There’s a lot of uncertainty, and what we found when we talk to military spouses is the information going out to service members is not going to the families …

Note from the Editor

  • November 24, 2014
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DC 360 will take the rest of the week off due to the holiday. Have a safe and happy Thanksgiving, and look for the next issue on Dec. 1.

Prospects for Omnibus Drop following Obama’s Immigration Action

  • November 23, 2014
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As Republicans continue to grapple with a response to President Obama’s executive order on immigration, the likelihood that Congress clears an omnibus bill during the lame duck session to wrap up appropriations for fiscal 2015 continues to fall. That calculation comes as time is running out to act on an omnibus by Dec. 11 when the current continuing resolution runs out and conservatives remain convinced that the must-pass spending legislation is their most potent weapon to confront Obama on his executive order shielding millions of illegal immigrants from deportation …

Army Realignment Should Be Conducted under BRAC, Community Leaders Say

  • November 23, 2014
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The decision-making process the Army is using to shrink its active-duty end strength to 420,000 by fiscal 2020 lacks transparency, say leaders in two Army communities that stand to lose thousands of troops as officials decide what installations will lose up to 70,000 soldiers. Instead, the Army’s force structure realignments should be made through a formal BRAC round, they say. “No one is comfortable with the process of this whole drawdown and the way it’s being managed. The citizens at large, Congress, the Army — nobody’s happy with this process. … The meat-cleaver approach that is being taken to defense spending is unconscionable,” said John Crutchfield, president and CEO of the Greater Killeen Chamber of Commerce …

Aviation Restructuring Prompts Loss of Ft. Campbell Brigade

  • November 23, 2014
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Fort Campbell, Ky., will lose a 2,400-soldier combat aviation brigade by next October as part of an Army aviation restructuring initiative, officials announced last week. The decision to eliminate the post’s 159th Combat Aviation Brigade also will mean the departure of 3,800 family members and result in cascading economic impacts in the surrounding community. “The loss of the 159th Combat Aviation Brigade at Fort Campbell will have a wide-ranging effect both on and off the installation on many levels …

City Names Developer for Alameda Point Town Center

  • November 23, 2014
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The Alameda City Council last week selected Alameda Point Partners to develop a 68-acre waterfront town center at Alameda Point, the former Naval Air Station Alameda located on San Francisco Bay. Alameda Point Partners is a partnership made up of six firms created specifically for the project and includes two Bay area firms — SRM Ernst and Thompson Dorfman Partners. The plan for the parcel calls for a town center, a mixed-use development with hundreds of homes, retail and open space …

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