2002 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 12 Jun 2002 02:02:11 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Air Force selects Montana site for new range
Air Force selects Montana site for new range
by Tech. Sgt. Tim Dougherty
Air Force Print News
06/10/02 - BLAINE COUNTY, Mont. -- Air Force officials announced plans 
to build an air-to-ground combat training range near the Fort Belknap 
Indian Reservation here.

The decision is a win-win for the Air Force and the local community, 
said project manager Lt. Col. Bill Schulz, from the Montana Air National 
Guard's 120th Fighter Wing, as it will provide new jobs for the Fort 
Belknap economy, as well as provide valuable training for military 
fighter pilots.

Schulz said that three different areas in north central Montana were 
evaluated through an environmental impact study. The area that was 
ultimately selected is a mix of federal, state, private and Indian trust 

One of the primary beneficiaries of the new range will be the 120th FW, 
located in Great Falls, Mont.

?The training range will bring the capability for a local unit to be 
able to train more efficiently and more regularly,? Schulz said. ?Right 
now ranges we use are quite a distance from Great Falls. Flying time is 
about 55 minutes each way. Compared to maybe 15 minutes for a local 
range, you can gain quite a bit of training on each sortie without 
additional flights. Your training time goes up tremendously.

?Being able to have a ground site under where we are already flying was 
one of our primary goals,? Schulz said. ?Along the way, we were trying 
to find an area where we could create some kind of a partnership with 
the local community so they?d have a stake in this too. We didn?t want 
anyone to think we were trying to take over.?

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