2002 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 7 Oct 2002 18:20:53 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Super Hornets welcome in SC
Run Date: 10/07/2002
Super Hornets welcome in SC
By Pat Coleman/Sun Journal Staff

Officials say Beaufort benefitted from arrival of Navy jets in 1995

BEAUFORT, S.C. -- Residents surrounding Marine Corps Air Station
Beaufort, S.C., say they can't figure out what all the noise is about,
and it's not the jet noise they're talking about.

There are nine F/A-18 Hornet squadrons based there now, including two
Navy squadrons that transferred in when NAS Cecil Field, Fla., was
closed by the Defense Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) Commission in

And, although MCAS Beaufort is not listed in the Navy's Draft
Environmental Impact Statement as a preferred alternative for the basing
of new Super Hornet squadrons, the base was among the top three choices
and considered under three alternatives.

"This is probably, overall, the best military town I've ever
experienced," said Jim Shufelt, who retired from the Army as a brigadier
general. "We have the air station north of town and Parris Island to the
south. They are terrific neighbors."

Shufelt, who chairs the Military Affairs Committee for the Greater
Beaufort Chamber of Commerce, said that there are a few people -- mostly
in the proximity of the AICUZ -- who complain about the jet noise from
time to time, but he credits base officials with working to keep the
noise to a minimum, and with keeping the community informed.

"If they're doing carrier takeoff and landing patterns, then they try to
schedule them, but it's generally at night," he said. "They do that
because they don't want pilots relying on landmarks."

There are three versions of Hornets among the seven Marine Corps F/A-18
and two Navy F/A-18 squadrons that joined the military community in
March 2000. The night training is critical for the squadrons based
aboard aircraft carriers.

"Three squadrons went off to the Afghani situation aboard a carrier,"
Shufelt said. "It's understood that they play a very key role in the
defense establishment. The community, essentially, is behind the
presence of the bases."

The DEIS outlines one scenario, ALT 1, that would place all the
squadrons of Super Hornets at MCAS Beaufort, and move the Marine Corps'
squadrons to Cherry Point. ALT 4B would place six squadrons of F/A-18s
at Oceana and four at Beaufort, while ALT 5B would assign six squadrons
to Cherry Point and four to Beaufort.

In an effort to promote that peaceful co-existence, base officials
routinely publish flight schedules in the city's newspaper, particularly
if they training extends late into the evening hours.

"One of the best things is the involvement and the attitude of the new
commanding officer, Col. Harmon Stockwell," said Ginnie Kozak, planning
director for the Lowcountry Council of Governments.

The organization is preparing to embark on a Joint Land Use Study like
the one nearing completion in Craven and Carteret counties.

"He is very positive both toward the JLUS and the interactions with the
community," she said.

A joint land use study gives both civilian and neighboring military
communities an opportunity to come together in partnership in a planning
process in which the military and outside community can plan to further
advance their goals without inhibiting one or the other.

"Anything that will detract from military value constitutes
encroachment," Shufelt said. "You want to identify not only those things
which enhance military value, but those things you can do to reduce
encroachment problems."

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