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Posts Tagged ‘mission support/community partnerships’

New BRAC Round Would Limit Military Force Structure, Forbes Says

  • February 3, 2015
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Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.), chairman of the House Armed Services’ Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee, said he opposes a new BRAC because conducting a round of base closures would freeze the military’s force structure at a level he believes is too low. “If you believe, as I believe, that these force structures are not right, that we are going to have to build these force structures up greater, then you’d better fight like the dickens to make sure you don’t have a BRAC …

Congress Will Come around on BRAC, Pentagon Official Says

  • February 2, 2015
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Congress ultimately will approve DOD’s request to hold a new BRAC round, Pentagon Comptroller Mike McCord said Monday, but he acknowledged it could take more time. During a briefing on Monday on the department’s fiscal 2016 budget proposal — which repeats last year’s request to hold a base closure round in 2017 — McCord recalled the two decades he spent as a staff member for the Senate Armed Services Committee.“I spent five years working with Sen. [John] McCain’s staff, at the time to get authority for what turned into the 2005 BRAC round,” he said. “We started back in 1997. So it doesn’t necessarily happen overnight. And in this case, it certainly has not …

Initiative to Fight Encroachment at Robins AFB Advances

  • February 2, 2015
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The state of Georgia has bought 107 housing units outside of Robins Air Force Base in an effort to limit encroachment, and officials continue to negotiate with property owners on additional purchases. Despite the state’s progress so far targeting mobile home parks to lower residential density in northern Houston County adjacent to the installation, some local lawmakers want the state to accelerate its timetable. “It’s not fast enough until we get it done,” said State House Majority Leader Larry O’Neal (R), who is concerned the effort won’t be completed before the next BRAC round. Houston County Commission Chairman Tommy Stalnaker said he was confident the pace of home purchases by the state would pick up …

Northeastern Maryland Leaders, Residents Pack Listening Session for Proving Ground

  • February 1, 2015
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More than 450 people, including elected officials, education and business leaders, and employees at Aberdeen Proving Ground, attended a nearly three-hour Army listening session last week to support the post before the service decides how to realign its forces as it shrinks its end strength by 70,000 soldiers. “We are partners with you and provide you with water and sewer, so anything that happens with Aberdeen Proving Ground is of great interest to our city,” said Aberdeen Mayor Mike Bennett. Bennett pointed out that the proving ground will celebrate 100 years in 2017, while Aberdeen will celebrate its 125th anniversary, reported the Baltimore Sun. “There are things that happen here that cannot be done anywhere else,” said Maj. Gen. Bruce Crawford, the installation’s senior commander and commanding general of Army Communications-Electronics Command …

California Schools Left behind in Effort to Upgrade Facilities at Military Bases

  • February 1, 2015
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California has more schools than any other state on the Pentagon’s list of on-base public schools most in need of repair, but in most cases the local school districts lack the matching funds to take advantage of congressional funding intended to address the problem. Congress has allocated almost a billion dollars in recent years to upgrade facilities or expand capacity at public schools on military installations, reported the Los Angeles Times. The grants, however, require school systems or their states to fund 20 percent of the projects’ cost. The Muroc Joint Unified School District would like to make a variety of repairs to its elementary school on Edwards AFB costing $27.8 million but so far hasn’t been able to raise the matching funds …

Corps Study Assesses Risk along North Atlantic Coast from Sea-Level Rise

  • February 1, 2015
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A new study by the Army Corps of Engineers assesses the risk along much of the Eastern seaboard from sea-level rise and other impacts of climate change. The goal of the North Atlantic Coast Comprehensive Study was to determine how best to reduce flood and storm damage risks for people and communities along the region hit by Hurricane Sandy in 2012. “In the last 100 years … every 20 to 30 years we’ve had a fairly significant storm that has pretty much created havoc along the coastal communities,” said Joseph Vietri, director of the National Planning Center of Expertise for Coastal Storm Risk Management. “That includes not only civilian communities, but also Department of Defense communities …

Support for Army’s Presence in Hawaii Faces Opposition

  • January 29, 2015
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At an Army listening session held near Schofield Barracks on Wednesday, the installation’s supporters easily outnumbered opponents but even the presence of only a small number of residents calling for the Army to downsize may have distracted from Chamber of Commerce Hawaii’s goal of showing overwhelming support for the Army. The chamber, which organized a “Keep Hawaii’s Heroes” campaign, said that worst case scenario would strip $1.35 billion in economic activity from the Honolulu region. To demonstrate support across Oahu for the Army, the chamber pointed to the 40,000 signatures it collected on behalf of the Army’s presence in Hawaii …

To Protect Wright-Patterson AFB, Dayton Leaders Focus on Big Picture

  • January 29, 2015
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Wright-Patterson Air Force Base benefited significantly from the last round of base closures and Dayton, Ohio, leaders are aiming to ensure DOD budget constraints don’t cut into those gains. In the current environment, local officials are just as concerned with preserving the installation’s current missions as securing new ones. “This is about the long-term relationship we have with the Air Force, and not a mission-by-mission effort,” Jim Hoagland, president and CEO of the Dayton Development Coalition, told the Dayton Business Journal. “Of course we want some of those new missions but we’re going to stay focused on the big picture, protecting those major assets …

North Country Gears up for Army Town Hall

  • January 28, 2015
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Local leaders in northern New York are getting ready for the March 20 listening session with the Army intended to provide officials input about community support for Fort Drum before the service decides how to shrink its end strength by 70,000 soldiers by fiscal 2020. A media campaign to alert the public about the event will kick off next week, reported the Watertown Daily Times. On the day of the meeting, the Fort Drum Regional Liaison Organization is planning to hold a number of small-group events for visiting officials throughout the day highlighting the community’s links to the post across a number of services, including education and health care …

Race to Add Buffer Space Won’t Help a Base Make Its Case, Experts Say

  • January 27, 2015
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The pressure of a looming BRAC round has prompted many defense communities to expand buffer zones around local installations to protect them from encroachment, but the efforts likely won’t impress Pentagon officials developing closure recommendations, according to several experts. “I think it’s a misguided competition,” Todd Harrison, a senior fellow at the Center for Strategic and Budgetary Assessments, told the Pensacola News Journal. “A buffer zone may reduce noise complaints, but I don’t think it’s going to make a big difference to the DOD …

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