• With UAS Mission Raising Its Profile, Grand Forks AFB Could Regain Tankers, Senator Says0

    The growing presence of unmanned aerial systems (UAS) at Grand Forks Air Force Base could lead to the Pentagon to reconsider its decision to strip the installation of its fleet of air refueling tankers, North Dakota Sen. John Hoeven (R) said last week. Hoeven’s remarks followed a groundbreaking by Northrop Grumman for a $10 million facility at Grand Sky, a business and aviation park for UAS being developed at the installation through an enhanced use lease. The ceremony marked the start of construction of a 36,000-square-foot building that will employ about 100 people and be used for research, training and other operations, reported the Grand Forks Herald. “The goal of Grand Sky is a $300 million investment and up to 3,000 people working there and in the surrounding communities,” Hoeven said …

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  • UAS Park under Way at Grand Forks AFB0

    The Air Force, Grand Forks County and Grand Sky Development Co. on Thursday broke ground on the nation’s first business and aviation park for unmanned aerial systems at Grand Forks AFB, a $300 million project being developed through an enhanced use lease. Last week’s ceremony was three years in the making, and the lead developer highlighted the forward thinking required to get the project off the ground. “It’s about the people that had the vision to embrace unmanned technology and invest in it,” said Tom Swoyer Jr., president of Grand Sky Development Co. “Most importantly, it’s about the people who answered the question, ‘Why not?’ that has made all the difference …

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  • Solar Project at Robins AFB Falls behind Schedule0

    Plans to develop a 10-megawatt solar array at Robins Air Force Base through an enhanced use lease have fallen behind schedule since they were initially announced last July. At the time, Chicago-based New Generation Power planned to begin construction at a 50-acre site at the Middle Georgia installation by September, with the solar plant slated to go online by January 2015. So far, though, work has not progressed beyond clearing the forested site, reported the Telegraph. Officials from the Air Force and the developer still need to sign a final lease, said Mark Kinkade, a spokesman for the Air Force Civil Engineering Center. “Despite the extended timeline, the project is moving forward …

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  • State Pledges $5.6M for UAS Park at Grand Forks AFB0

    North Dakota is allocating $5.6 million to support the continued development of the Grand Sky unmanned aerial systems (UAS) business and aviation park at Grand Forks AFB, Gov. Jack Dalrymple (R) said Monday. About $3 million of the funding will be used to upgrade a flight tarmac and other infrastructure that will support UAS testing and flight operations, according to a release from the governor’s office. The 217-acre project is being developed under an enhanced use lease with Grand Forks County and calls for 1.2 million square feet of hangar, office, shop, laboratory and data center space required for UAS development, testing and training, sensor technology development, and data analysis and management …

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  • EUL Brings Health Care Firm’s Call Center to Ellsworth AFB0

    A Virginia-based health care management firm is opening a call center at Ellsworth Air Force Base, S.D., on the first floor of a building used by the Air Force’s Financial Services Center. Advance Health is leasing the space through the enhanced use leasing program. Base officials worked through the governor’s office of economic development and the South Dakota Ellsworth Development Authority to court Advance Health, which was looking for a more central and western location for a call center, reported the Rapid City Journal. “We have our first success with that program,” said Scott Landguth, director of the Ellsworth Development Authority …

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  • Senate Bill Would Allow Favorable Lease Terms to Local Schools0

    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.

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