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Defense Communities 360 Headlines

Air Force Hits Goal for Awarding Performance-Based Cleanup Contracts at BRAC Sites

  • March 30, 2014
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The Air Force Civil Engineer Center has met its initial target for awarding performance-based contracts to clean up BRAC sites, after awarding a $42.6 million contract to accelerate remediation at the former Galena Forward Operating Location in Alaska. AFCEC’s goal was to have 95 percent of all BRAC sites under a performance-based remediation (PBR) contract by the end of 2014. Galena, located in west central Alaska, is the service’s 24th and final BRAC installation covered under a PBR contract. In total, the agency has awarded nearly $360 million in PBR contracts, encompassing 626 sites across 29 former bases …

Army to Transfer Large Parcel to Ft. Gillem LRA Shortly

  • March 30, 2014
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The Forest Park/Fort Gillem LRA is preparing to take possession of 778 acres at the former post located outside of Atlanta as early as May 2. The authority is planning to hold a ceremony for the closing on that date and has invited Katherine Hammack, assistant secretary of the Army for installations, energy and environment, reported the Clayton Daily News. The Army could convey more property to the LRA before the end of the year. The Army is planning to transfer a parcel that still is contaminated under an early transfer …

Only Two Services Used Privatization Authority for Unaccompanied Housing

  • March 30, 2014
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The four military services have come to varying conclusions regarding the feasibility of relying on privatized housing for unaccompanied personnel, with only the Army and Navy taking advantage of the authority, according to a new report by the Government Accountability Office (GAO). Analyses conducted by the services about the potential of privatizing housing for personnel with no dependents considered a number of factors, including the availability of the basic allowance for housing (BAH) — which provides a stream of revenue in the form of rent payments for the projects — for junior unaccompanied personnel …

Air Force Plan to Retire A-10s Poses Dilemma for Lawmakers

  • March 30, 2014
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House lawmakers expressed frustration over the Air Force’s plan to retire its fleet of A-10 close air support aircraft, as witnesses testified during multiple hearings last week that the aircraft’s value to the force could not overcome the overwhelming need to trim the service’s budget. “If you look at risks, capabilities and operational needs, the A-10 should not be retired,” Rep. Michael Turner (R-Ohio), chairman of the House Armed Services Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee, told the Hill. Yet, Turner said he did not know whether the committee could find offsetting cuts in the fiscal 2015 budget to save the fleet of 283 A-10 Warthogs …

Lt. Governor Tours Reserve Bases across Pennsylvania

  • March 27, 2014
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Pennsylvania Lt. Gov. Jim Cawley visited several military installations in Pittsburgh on Wednesday, including the 911th Airlift Wing at Pittsburgh Air Reserve Station, as part of a statewide tour by the Pennsylvania Military Community Protection Commission. Cawley chairs the panel, which Gov. Tom Corbett (R) established in 2012 to promote the state’s military facilities and track federal actions affecting them …

Airport to Invest in Project to Preserve West Virginia Air Guard Base

  • March 27, 2014
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Local airport officials in Kanawha County, W.Va., agreed this week to invest $1.5 million over 10 years to help construct a bridge intended to secure the future of the Air National Guard’s 130th Airlift Wing. The vote by the Yeager Airport’s board represents the last county entity needed to approve funding for the project, reported the Charleston Gazette. Last year, Kanawha County agreed to fund one-third of the bridge’s $6.2 million construction cost. The state also is contributing to the project …

Navy To Conduct Radiation Testing of Treasure Island Homes

  • March 27, 2014
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The Navy has agreed to test all homes on Treasure Island for radiation contamination following the discovery of radioactive items in recent years at the former base located in San Francisco Bay. The Navy’s decision stems from requests from residents and “a recent radiological finding beneath a non-leased housing unit …

‘Empty Facilities Tax’ Costing Army $500M Annually, McHugh Says

  • March 27, 2014
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The Army is spending an estimated $500 million a year to maintain buildings it no longer needs, a cost that will rise in the absence of a BRAC round as the service continues to draw down its forces, Secretary John McHugh told lawmakers Thursday. McHugh referred to the funds spent on unneeded facilities as an “empty facilities tax” as he testified before the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee. He pointed to that half-billion-dollar-a-year tax as one reason why Congress should approve the Pentagon’s request to hold a round of base closures in 2017 …

Further Sequester Relief Not a Priority for Senate Leadership

  • March 27, 2014
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Senate Democrats have downgraded their effort to ease the burden of sequestration on DOD through fiscal 2021, dropping it from their list of legislative goals for the remainder of the year. Over the last 18 months, top Senate Democrats had made a push to replace the 2011 Budget Control Act spending caps on defense and domestic spending with alternative mechanisms for reducing the deficit, but on Thursday Senate leaders highlighted only domestic issues as their priorities for 2014 …

Entrepreneurial Course Helps Separating Service Members Launch Startups

  • March 26, 2014
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“Boots to Business,” an optional supplement to DOD’s newly revised Transition GPS program developed by the Small Business Administration, is providing transitioning service personnel a variety of tools to start their own small businesses. After a two-day introduction, soon-to-be veterans in this track enroll in an eight-week online course through Syracuse University aimed at helping service members prepare a business plan …

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