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Posts Tagged ‘BRAC’

‘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 …

Ft. Rucker Poised to Grow after Next BRAC, Local Official Says

  • March 26, 2014
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Despite the obvious threat posed by a looming BRAC round, Fort Rucker stands to gain missions in the next round of base closures, according to a member of the post’s local support group, Friends of Fort Rucker. The installation, located in southeastern Alabama, has an array of assets that could allow it to benefit from the next BRAC round, said Rod Wolfe, a retired brigadier general who also serves on Alabama’s Military Stability Commission …

Navy Retains Little Excess Infrastructure, Officials Say

  • March 25, 2014
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The Navy eliminated most of its excess capacity in previous BRAC rounds, but the service still would take the opportunity to assess its existing footprint if Congress were to authorize additional base closures, the Navy’s top leaders told lawmakers Tuesday. “We will certainly take a — a very hard look at all our capacities, at all the bases that we have, should Congress authorize a new BRAC round. And we do support the use of that tool,” Secretary Ray Mabus told the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee …

Army Leaders Look to BRAC to Mitigate Spending Cuts

  • March 25, 2014
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The Army’s top civilian and uniformed officials on Tuesday pressed the Pentagon’s case to hold a new BRAC, telling the House Armed Services Committee the service could save an estimated $1 billion annually following a round of base closures. Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno said that a new round would cost less than the 2005 one and generate a larger return due to a reduction in operating costs and a drop in the Army’s end strength, reported Defense News. The last round required the service to invest $13 billion at the outset, producing annual savings of $1 billion …

Housing Investors Face Uncertainty under BRAC, Downsizing

  • March 24, 2014
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Dramatic reductions in military end strength, along with a new round of base closures, could harm holders of $24 billion in military housing privatization bonds, which have financed the construction of more than 190,000 residences since 1996. A quarter of the bonds are uninsured, reports Barron’s. In addition, the developers and operators of most of DOD’s housing privatization projects are not protected against changes in occupancy stemming from BRAC …

Navy Not Eager for New BRAC Round, Top Officer Says

  • March 24, 2014
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The Navy is not anxious to hold a new round of base closures as it doesn’t have a lot of excess capacity, Chief of Naval Operations Adm. Jonathan Greenert said last week. “I’m very satisfied with our laydown of our bases as we look around the world,” Greenert told reporters after an all hands call at Naval Station Mayport, Fla. “People ask me, do you have the need? Do you see a great need for BRAC? I say, no, I don’t …

Norton AFB Museum Celebrates 20th Anniversary of Base Closure

  • March 23, 2014
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Norton Air Force Base Museum, located 30 miles east of Los Angeles, will mark the 20th anniversary of the base’s closure on Saturday, March 22. Norton AFB, once home to the Air Force’s 63rd Military Airlift Wing, employed more than 12,000 military and civilian workers and pumped nearly $2 billion each year into the local economy at its peak.

DOD Bets Against Sequestration

  • March 23, 2014
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The DOD’s current long-term fiscal plans make a big assumption–that Congress will find a way to halt the automatic $35 billion cut to the department’s budget slated for 2016. In a memo to the military service chiefs last month, Acting Deputy Secretary of Defense Christine Fox said next fiscal year “will be a critical inflection point…and we will look for a signal from Congress that sequestration will not be imposed in FY 2016…

Community and State Leaders Rally to Protect Scott AFB

  • March 23, 2014
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A coalition of local leaders and state officials backing Scott Air Force Base, led by U.S. Senator Dick Durbin (D-IL), met with General Mark Welsh III, Chief of Staff of the Air Force, in an effort to persuade the General of the base’s importance to national defense. Scott Air Force Base, located in southwestern Illinois, employs 13,000 uniformed and civilian workers and represents a large economic engine for the local economy, contributing $2.5 billion dollars annually to the region…

Air Force Creates Online Database for Environmental Cleanup Records

  • March 20, 2014
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Details about the progress of an Air Force installation’s environmental cleanup are now available online to the public, saving interested residents a trip to the base or local library. The database includes the administrative records for more than 170 active and closed installations in the continental United States, according to the Air Force Civil Engineer Center (AFCEC). The database includes a variety of documents, including records of decision, engineering and cost evaluations, site inspection reports, state closure documents, and other documentation as dictated by the Comprehensive Environmental Response, Compensation, and Liability Act and the Resource Conservation and Recovery Act. AFCEC spent three years converting existing installation documents into electronic files and developing a database for centralized storage. Officials at each installation now will be responsible for maintaining the files that make up the administrative record.

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