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Defense Communities 360 Headlines

Panel Rejects Navy Plans to Retire Carrier, Deactivate Cruisers

  • May 7, 2014
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The House Armed Services Committee on Wednesday authorized funding to refuel and overhaul the U.S.S. George Washington, upending the Navy’s plans to retire one of its 11 aircraft carriers. The committee’s vote during its day-long markup of the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill largely reflected language passed last week by the Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee. The bill authorizes $796 million to refuel the carrier; DOD officials have said they would budget necessary funds to refuel the carrier only if lawmakers relax the spending caps imposed starting in FY 2016 …

ADC Task Force to Review Association’s Governance

  • May 7, 2014
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The ADC Board of Directors has launched a task force to assess whether the association’s governance structure needs to be updated, an exercise that will rely on input from members. The effort comes as the association celebrates its 35th anniversary and is intended to ensure that ADC’s governance follows the best practices in the world of associations. The task force will focus on issues such as the structure of the board and whether it is representative of the membership, and how directors are elected …

Senate Coalition Moves to Block Army National Guard Changes

  • May 7, 2014
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A bipartisan group of 19 senators introduced legislation to preserve much of the Army National Guard’s combat aviation mission until an independent commission reviews a proposal from the Army to transfer the Guard’s 192 AH-64 Apache attack helicopters. The measure — introduced by Sens. Patrick Leahy (D-Vt.) and Lindsey Graham (R-S.C.), co-chairs of the Senate National Guard Caucus — also would bar the Army’s plans to trim the size of the Guard from 350,000 to 335,000 soldiers by fiscal 2017 …

House Committee Rebuffs BRAC Request

  • May 7, 2014
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The House Armed Services Committee approved language in the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill rejecting the Pentagon’s request to hold a BRAC round in 2017 during its day-long markup Wednesday of the annual policy measure. The vote was set in motion last week when the Readiness Subcommittee included a prohibition on conducting additional base closure rounds in its portion of the bill, and reinforced when Committee Chairman Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) endorsed the ban on new BRACs earlier this week. At the same time the bill, which still was being debated Wednesday night, includes language calling for DOD to prepare a comprehensive assessment of the need for additional base closures — a possible first step toward a new BRAC …

City Eager to Move Ahead with Redevelopment Decades after Nebraska Depot’s Closure

  • May 6, 2014
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Officials in Sidney, located in Nebraska’s Panhandle, plan to rely on tax increment financing to redevelop the former Sioux Army Depot, more than 40 years after it closed. The city’s plans were spurred by a new law, LB66, allowing cities to take advantage of tax increment financing for blighted military installations outside of city limits. Sidney will become the first city to take advantage of the new statute …

Army Begins Analysis to Decide Where Additional Units Will Be Eliminated

  • May 6, 2014
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Army officials are gathering data at 30 installations that could lose more than 10,000 soldiers when the service’s end strength falls to 450,000 soldiers or fewer. The data will be used to assess the socioeconomic impact of possible cuts to installations and their surrounding communities, Brig. Gen. Roger Cloutier, director of force management, told Army Times. A reduction to a total force of 980,000 soldiers — including 450,000 in the active Army, 335,000 in the Army National Guard, and 195,000 in the Army Reserve — is slated to be carried out by fiscal year 2017 …

Eight Lawmakers, Massachusetts Governor among 2014 Defense Community Awardees

  • May 6, 2014
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Fifteen leaders, organizations and communities will be honored in Washington next month as recipients of the 2014 Defense Community Awards. ADC announced the winners today and will formally recognize them June 5 at the 2nd Annual Defense Community Awards Congressional Breakfast being held in conjunction with the Defense Communities National Summit. “The committee was impressed with the high quality of the nominations we reviewed,” said Celeste Werner, chair of the 2014 Awards Advisory Committee and vice president of Matrix Design Group. “This year’s awards winners demonstrate the significance of innovation in defense communities and showcase the exceptional accomplishments of elected officials, public servants and military leaders across the country …

Lawmakers to Offer New Plan for Reviewing Army’s Restructuring Proposal

  • May 6, 2014
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The sponsors of a House bill that would suspend the Army’s plan to shift the National Guard’s 192 Apache attack helicopters to active-duty units plan to offer an alternative plan today when the House Armed Services Committee marks up its portion of the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill. The amendment, sponsored by Reps. Joe Wilson (R-S.C.) and Bill Enyart (D-Ill.), still would freeze the Army’s plan to move the Apaches, reports CQ Roll Call. In addition, it would limit the Army’s plan to reduce the end strength of its active forces and the National Guard until the Pentagon completes an analysis of the changes …

Smith Proposal Would Reform BRAC Process

  • May 6, 2014
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An amendment that Rep. Adam Smith (D-Wash.), the ranking member of the House Armed Services Committee, plans to offer to the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill approving a new BRAC round will call for a variety of reforms intended to address lawmakers’ most common criticisms of the base closure process. “Given that the last BRAC round transformed more than it closed and has cost more and saved less than original estimates, members of Congress have justifiable reservations about giving the Department of Defense authority to conduct another round …

Massachusetts Reserve Base Losing Aircraft, Personnel

  • May 6, 2014
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Westover Air Reserve Base in western Massachusetts will lose half its C-5 cargo planes starting in March 2015 and about 335 personnel beginning in October 2015, officials announced last week. Eight of the 439th Airlift Wing’s 16 transport aircraft will relocate to Joint Base San Antonio as part of an upgrade of the C-5 fleet, reported Air Force Times. The wing is expected to lose 59 full-time enlisted personnel and 275 reservists. The move, a consequence of budget cuts, will not mean the end of the air wing or the base. “We’ll remain strong. It’s a wonderful base, we have great support from the community and we plan on being here for the long haul,” said Brig. Gen. Steven Vautrain, commander of the 439th Airlift Wing.

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