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Posts Tagged ‘BRAC’

Devens Bounces Back from Past Setbacks

  • May 9, 2013
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The beat goes on at Devens, with three major projects underway at the former Fort Devens, located 35 miles west of downtown Boston, following two major setbacks since 2011. Evergreen Solar’s decision to shut down its facility for manufacturing solar panels two years ago was partially offset after French conglomerate Saint-Gobain leased more than half of the plant last July, reported the Boston Business Journal. Also last year, two of the reuse project’s three host towns scuttled plans to convert Vicksburg Square, a former Army housing complex, into affordable housing for seniors and veterans …

Emphasis on Innovation, Site Completion Speeds Air Force Cleanups

  • May 9, 2013
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A change in its preferred contracting method along with a shift in its goals for remediation projects at active and BRAC installations has proved a real boon for the Air Force, helping it complete cleanups quicker and rack up taxpayer savings. In early 2011, then-Assistant Secretary Terry Yonkers implemented a new policy calling for the service to shift its objective from achieving remedy-in-place to closing sites …

Spokane Community, Tribe Spar over Casino Project near Fairchild AFB

  • May 8, 2013
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As a decision approaches by the federal government on the Spokane Tribe’s plan to build a casino and resort under the path of training flights from Fairchild Air Force Base in Eastern Washington, local leaders are taking a stronger stand against the project. In a letter sent last week to the Bureau of Indian Affairs, Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers said the project should not be approved because of the potential for it to interfere with the installation’s mission. “I believe that in order to not be vulnerable to closure in another [BRAC] round, Fairchild must be able to continue to modernize and prevent local development that could be viewed as an encroachment …

Durbin Takes Dig at BRAC Request

  • May 8, 2013
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During a Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee hearing Wednesday on the Air Force’s budget request, Chairman Dick Durbin (Ill.) acknowledged that he remains skeptical about the BRAC process after witnessing the previous five rounds. “Base closure commissions are supposed to take the politicians out of the process. I think they’ve replaced the politicians with other politicians,” said Durbin, the Senate’s number two Democrat. Durbin said he shared the concern of Sen. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), chairman of the Armed Services Committee, that base closures do not produce sufficient savings …

Congress Needs More Evidence of Defense Belt-Tightening Before It Will OK BRAC

  • May 7, 2013
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As long as there are reforms the Pentagon could carry out that are less politically delicate than closing military bases, lawmakers will find reasons to put off a new round of BRAC, according to a retired flag officer who has spent decades in Washington. DOD first needs to reduce its ranks of flag officers and other wasteful spending, Arnold Punaro, a retired major general in the Marine Corps, told CQ. For instance, the Joint Chiefs of Staff has added 1,000 employees in the past two years …

Central Texas Community ‘Generally Supportive’ of BRAC

  • May 6, 2013
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Lawmakers representing Texas districts with military installations have indicated they are opposed to holding a BRAC round in 2015, but one community in the state says it supports a new round, mostly because it’s easier to prepare for a transparent base closure process than a “free-for-all.” “We are generally supportive of a future BRAC,” Phil Neighbors, president of the San Angelo Chamber of Commerce, told the Times Record News. “The DOD has to take serious action to save money, and we’d rather have an organized BRAC process than a political free-for-all …

Mississippi Communities Remain on Watch for BRAC

  • May 6, 2013
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Mississippi communities have continued to invest in projects to benefit their local installations following the last round of base closures. After education was identified as a major concern during the 2005 round, the Golden Triangle communities neighboring Columbus Air Force Base have worked on several initiatives. To improve public schools, they built a new middle school and encouraged military children to attend the schools of a highly rated school district in the area …

Navy Reaches Deal to Practice Carrier Landings at NASA Facility

  • May 5, 2013
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The Navy signed an agreement last week with NASA allowing turboprop aircraft based in Norfolk, Va., to use the Wallops Flight Facility on Virginia’s Eastern Shore to practice carrier landings. Under the agreement, the Navy will pay NASA $1.9 million a year for repairs and upgrades to the airfield, as well as reimburse the agency for support services it uses, reported the Virginian-Pilot. The Navy’s selection in January of the Wallops facility as an alternate landing site provides a host of benefits to the federal government and the Norfolk region …

Huntsville-Area Schools Get Their BRAC Fix

  • May 5, 2013
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North Alabama schools will be the beneficiary of $175 million in state bond funds dedicated to school districts affected by BRAC mission growth, after Madison County lawmakers voted last week to allocate $5 million to the county school system to use as matching funds. The Alabama Legislature passed a measure last year to provide bond funds for construction and renovation of aging schools whose enrollments would be expanding due to BRAC growth, but no money had been allocated, reported the Huntsville Times. About 4,700 jobs moved to Redstone Arsenal following the last round of BRAC …

Air Force Merges BRAC Programs into Single Directorate

  • April 30, 2013
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The Air Force has merged all staff working on BRAC missions, including environmental and real property pre-transfer operations, under one directorate within the Air Force Civil Engineer Center, officials announced Tuesday. Effective April 22, 45 staff, including civilian and support contractors, transitioned into the Installation Directorate’s BRAC Program Management Division led by Stephen TerMaath. The move follows last October’s creation of the civil engineer center …

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