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Posts Tagged ‘mission support/community partnerships’

BRAC Round Inevitable, Experts Say

  • June 23, 2015
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Congress is likely to approve a new round of base closures within five years, as BRAC is not the political third rail it’s frequently described as, Mackenzie Eaglen, a resident fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, said Monday at the opening general session of the 2015 Defense Communities National Summit. While lawmakers are naturally disinclined against authorizing the Pentagon to close additional installations, the consequences of DOD’s worsening budget situation should help persuade Congress that a BRAC round is needed, Eaglen told more than 500 Summit attendees. The Budget Control Act caps have resulted in deteriorating readiness levels for the military, an indication of less frequent training and lower spending on facility maintenance, she explained …

OEA Plans to Support Communities Coping with Downsizing

  • June 23, 2015
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With more than a dozen communities experiencing downsizing at neighboring military installations over the past several years and further cuts in personnel looming, DOD’s Office of Economic Adjustment is planning to offer financial assistance and other support to affected communities. The agency plans to issue an announcement next month in the Federal Register soliciting communities to apply for grants to address personnel reductions — including military and civilian — of at least 2,000 at local installations, OEA Director Patrick O’Brien said Monday during the OEA Town Hall session at the 2015 Defense Communities National Summit. Communities would be eligible if they suffered the cuts over the past three years or are slated to absorb them over the next three years …

Ohio Air Reserve Station to Help Neighbor Demolish Vacant Properties

  • June 23, 2015
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Within the next month, reservists from Youngstown Air Reserve Station in northeast Ohio will help the city of Youngstown tear down 11 vacant homes. The partnership, an initiative under the Air Force Community Partnership program, will provide the city with the labor to perform the demolitions, while providing the airmen with experience they may not receive otherwise. “They do everything from HVAC to electrical, to plumbing and carpentry. This is an opportunity for them to operate heavy equipment, get training in equipment they might not normally see at the Air Reserve Station,” said Col. James Dignan, 910th Airlift Wing commander …

Monterey Steps up Effort to Defend Area Installations

  • June 19, 2015
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The city of Monterey, Calif., on Tuesday approved a contract to hire a Washington-area consultant to craft a strategy to prevent possible closure of the Presidio of Monterey or the Naval Postgraduate School. “The need will almost inevitably arise when we need to defend these institutions,” said Deputy City Manager Dino Pick, who led the effort to hire Public Private Solutions Group. David Spauer, the county’s economic development director, also supported the proposal before the city council. “This first and essential step is extremely necessary,” Spauer said, reported the Monterey Herald. “When [the analysis] is completed, it will set the groundwork we will need to talk to the Navy, to the Pentagon, other legislators, on the strength of our area and our assets …

Eastern Washington Leaders Raise Alarm over Casino Project

  • June 19, 2015
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Lawmakers in Eastern Washington and other advocates for Fairchild Air Force Base are hoping to convince Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) to block the Spokane Tribe’s plan to build a resort and casino under the path of training flights from the installation, after the U.S. Interior Department this week approved the project following a two-year review. Any possible encroachment issue could hurt Fairchild in a future BRAC round, area leaders said. Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R) told the Spokesman-Review she plans to call Inslee and urge him to reject the plan. The Republican congresswoman said she supports the tribe’s efforts for economic development but opposes the location because, in her opinion, “Fairchild comes first …

Washington Governor Prepares for Downsizing at JBLM

  • June 18, 2015
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Washington Gov. Jay Inslee (D) on Wednesday directed a new state committee to craft plans to mitigate a reduction of up to 11,000 soldiers and Army civilians at Joint Base Lewis-McChord. “These are people who are going to need us in coming months by the thousands,” Inslee said. The governor expects the Army to announce next week how it will realign its forces as it eliminates up to 70,000 soldiers by fiscal 2020, reported the News Tribune. The Army would not confirm that it will announce its second round of force reductions next week, but officials recently have been advising congressional staff and local government leaders that a decision is coming, according to the story …

Amid Diversification, Goodyear Continues to Leverage Presence of Luke AFB

  • June 18, 2015
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The city of Goodyear, a suburb of Phoenix located close by Luke Air Force Base, is trying to recruit a mix of civilian and defense companies to take over a 500,000-square-foot aerospace campus no longer used by Lockheed Martin. Goodyear had enjoyed an extended run as an aerospace hub since World War II, when it began to build military aircraft, before shifting to dirigibles and surveillance systems. That activity started to wind down in 2009, and when sequestration hit in 2013 Lockheed cut its workforce from 600 to 50, reported National Defense. “We would like to recruit more aviation, aerospace and cyber security companies,” said Harry Paxton, Goodyear’s economic development project manager …

Senate Bill Would Allow Favorable Lease Terms to Local Schools

  • June 17, 2015
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Local school systems would be able to lease property at military installations for less than fair market value, under a provision in the fiscal 2016 defense authorization bill now under debate in the Senate. The bill would amend 10 U.S.C. Section 2667 — the federal statute authorizing the enhanced use leasing program — to allow the military services to lease non-excess property for less than fair market value to a local education agency, or to an elementary or secondary school. The change is intended to help school systems that support military families, according to the committee report accompanying the legislation. The bill text, S. 1376, and committee report, S. Rpt. 114-49, are available on congress.gov.

Task Force’s Efforts to Support Ohio Manufacturing Facility Begin ‘To Pay Off’

  • June 17, 2015
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Task Force LIMA, the local support organization for the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center, is moving ahead with several initiatives to promote the government-owned, contractor-operated tank and military vehicle production facility in northwestern Ohio. The task force has reached out to the Ohio Federal and Military Jobs Commission after the manufacturing facility was ignored in the commission’s report outlining ways to boost federal and military jobs in Ohio, reported limaohio.com. The group plans to nominate a representative to serve on the commission as soon as one of the current member’s terms expires. “I think it’s really important that we now have a partner in the state of Ohio, which is a new dynamic,” said Lima Mayor David Berger …

Air Force Offers Incentives to Trim Civilian Staffing at Headquarters

  • June 17, 2015
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The Air Force this week began offering buyouts and early retirement incentives to civilian workers to help it achieve a DOD initiative to reduce headquarters costs and staff levels by 20 percent. The incentives mark the third round of the service’s current workforce reduction effort, which is designed to eliminate redundant activities and improve efficiencies. “The Air Force is committed to using voluntary separation programs as much as possible before pursuing involuntary options,” said Debra Warner, the service’s director of civilian force policy. “The Air Force is committed to sustaining excellence, meeting fiscal requirements and minimizing negative impacts on our current permanent civilian workforce and their families …

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