2003 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 10 Jul 2003 16:10:53 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] Military bases on guard for closures
Military bases on guard for closures
State escaped cuts in last four rounds, but its luck may be running out
Thursday, July 10, 2003

As Rep. Norm Dicks, dean of defense issues in Washington's congressional
delegation, sometimes jokes, the only military installation Washington
lost in the past 15 years was the officers club at Sand Point.

Washington state has been so effective in shielding its nine major
military bases during four rounds of nationwide closings since 1988 that
it actually gained more defense jobs than any state. Nationwide, 97
major military bases were closed, and California lost the most defense
jobs, 93,000 -- but Washington gained 18,000 and lost no turf.

Yet although Dicks and others believe the military value of Washington's
bases has grown, as the Pentagon prepares for the latest round of
closures, they've found no more room for smugness.

Not with a weak economy that newly appreciates the 86,000 uniformed and
civilian defense jobs that in 2001 provided nearly $8 billion in defense
payroll and contracts -- $1.3 billion in Seattle alone.

And not with Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld taking a more aggressive
stance. A defense undersecretary said in December that there are no
sacred cows; every major base in the nation is on the table and more
will be closed or merged in 2005 than in four previous rounds combined.

"We're taking it very seriously," Dicks said.

Rumsfeld recently said the Joint Chiefs of Staff consider 23 percent of
the nation's roughly 400 major domestic military bases obsolete. Cutting
them could free $3.6 billion a year for modernization programs aimed at
keeping men and women in uniform, and improving life for their families,
Rumsfeld said.

"It is much more fun to be Santa Claus than to be denying things,"
Rumsfeld said. Closing bases "is the last thing in the world I want to
do, but it's pretty clear we have to do it."

This article can be viewed at:

  Prev by Date: [CPEO-MEF] The Columbus Dispatch
Next by Date: [CPEO-MEF] IAAP funds in bill
  Prev by Thread: [CPEO-MEF] The Columbus Dispatch
Next by Thread: Re: [CPEO-MEF] Military bases on guard for closures

CPEO Lists
Author Index
Date Index
Thread Index