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Posts Tagged ‘mission support/community partnerships’

Up(Capitol)hill Battle Remains for DOD to Secure New BRAC Authorization

  • February 13, 2014
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Little has changed in the battle between Congress and the Pentagon over whether lawmakers will authorize a new BRAC in the two years since the Obama administration first asked to hold additional rounds of base closure, with DOD still needing to overcome significant opposition in both chambers. If DOD wants lawmakers to approve a new round, the department will need to counter past arguments against it and, possibly, surmount an even higher hurdle — defend the momentum leading toward a much smaller military — according to discussions led by installation officials and Capitol Hill staff at this week’s 2014 Installation Innovation Forum …

Navy, Conservation Group Purchase Buffer for Bangor Sub Base

  • February 12, 2014
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The Navy, in partnership with the Trust for Public Land, has completed agreements to prevent development on 1,420 acres of land adjacent to operating ranges used by Naval Submarine Base Bangor in northwest Washington. The trust purchased the tracts and sold them to Ecotrust Forest Management under an easement purchased by the Navy that restricts development, reported the Kitsap Sun. The properties will remain as working forest and be open to the public …

Active Army Shouldn’t Drop below 450,000 Troops, Odierno Says

  • February 12, 2014
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Army Chief of Staff Gen. Raymond Odierno said Tuesday the service needs at least 450,000 active-duty soldiers to counter conflicts that are likely to arise in the future, a direct response to the possibility the force could be trimmed to an end strength as small as 420,000 to cope with deep spending cuts. During a panel discussion hosted by the Council on Foreign Relations, Odierno said the Army’s minimum end strength should be 980,000 soldiers, including 335,000 in the National Guard and 195,000 in the Reserve, reported DoDBuzz. The active-duty force currently is scheduled to fall to 490,000 troops by the end of fiscal 2015 …

Services Push Ahead to Take Advantage of Shared Services Authority

  • February 11, 2014
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Representatives from the Air Force and Army at the 2014 Installation Innovation Forum on Tuesday described their efforts to implement the new statute allowing installations and communities to share base support services, while a senior Navy official indicated the service is encouraging its installations to explore ways to implement the authority. The Air Force is “excited about the opportunity it creates,” Kathleen Ferguson, principal deputy assistant secretary for installations, environment and logistics, said of the authority in the fiscal 2013 defense authorization bill that allows installations to enter into intergovernmental support agreements with a local government to provide, receive or share support services for most municipal functions …

School System Tackles Misalignment following Response to BRAC Growth at Ft. Benning

  • February 10, 2014
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The Muscogee County (Ga.) School District built several schools to accommodate the surge of students expected due to growth at Fort Benning following the 2005 round of BRAC. Unfortunately, many of the system’s schools now have a surfeit of space, while others are packed to capacity. “We have plenty of student stations, in other words, seats. They’re just not in the right place,” said David Lewis, Muscogee County Superintendent. “I could tell you it’s probably about close to half are under full capacity …

City Acts to Spur Development outside of Fort Polk

  • February 9, 2014
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The city of Leesville closed in on its goal of attracting commercial and residential development outside the gates of Fort Polk, after the city council last month approved an agreement allowing Leesville to acquire property needed for water infrastructure improvements along a highway and a proposed parkway connecting it to the post in west-central Louisiana. “The acquisition of water assets along La. 467 and the proposed parkway between La. 467 and La. 468 will bring us one step closer to creating a well-developed urban area just outside Fort Polk’s gates …

Air Force Secretary Embraces Thrust of Commission Report

  • February 9, 2014
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In comments Friday indicating the Air Force agrees with the major points of the final report of the National Commission on the Structure of the Air Force, Secretary Deborah Lee James said the service plans to increase its dependence on its reserve components. “Going forward, there’s no doubt in my mind that our Air Force is going to rely more, not less, on our National Guard and Reserve forces,” James said, reported the Air Force News Service. “This makes sense from not only from a mission standpoint, but from an economic standpoint …

Navy Postpones Move of Two Squadrons at NAS Oceana

  • February 6, 2014
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The Navy has postponed the relocation of two squadrons of F/A-18 Super Hornets from Naval Air Station Oceana in Virginia Beach, Va., until at least 2016, a move that would have resulted in an estimated $42 million annual hit to the Hampton Roads economy. The squadrons initially were designated to be shifted to Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C., but in 2006 their destination was changed to the West Coast as part of the military’s pivot to Asia, reported the Virginian-Pilot. The fighter jets now are slated to move to Naval Air Station Lemoore in central California. The two squadrons are part of a total of 10 squadrons of Super Hornets that have been based at Oceana since 2008. The Navy has no plans to replace the two squadrons at Oceana after they move, according to the story.

Environmental Groups File Lawsuit Threatening Ft. Huachuca over Water Use

  • February 6, 2014
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Several environmental groups have filed a federal lawsuit to force the Army to comply with an earlier ruling requiring it to determine whether operations at Fort Huachuca are depleting the San Pedro River, an action that ultimately could force officials to curtail missions at the southeastern Arizona post. The lawsuit is the latest move in a battle the environmental groups have fought for more than a decade to protect the San Pedro’s upper basin and two endangered species that live there. The suit seeks to force the Army to issue a new “biological opinion” to assess whether the installation’s reliance on groundwater pumping threatens the water umbel, a semi-aquatic plant, and the southwestern willow flycatcher …

Legal Concerns Slow Implementation of New Partnerships Authority, Hammack Says

  • February 6, 2014
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Unanswered legal questions surrounding the new statute allowing installations and communities to share base support services have hampered Army efforts to take advantage of the authority, according to Katherine Hammack, assistant secretary of the Army for installations, energy and environment. The Army is eager to take advantage of sec. 331, the authority in the fiscal 2013 defense authorization bill that allows installations to enter into intergovernmental support agreements with a local government to provide, receive or share support services for most municipal functions. So far, Army headquarters is encouraging installations to work with their host communities to identify the potential opportunities and capabilities each has to offer …

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