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Joint Armed Services Committee to Meet Regarding Protection of Alaska’s Military Bases

ANCHORAGE-The Legislature’s Joint Armed Services Committee will meet on Tuesday, June 26 to address upcoming federal proposals to realign and close military bases around the nation.   Members will hear from the consulting group hired by the State, Hyjek and Fix Consulting Group, on solutions for protecting Alaska’s military bases and operations from federal budget cuts.

Several state, borough and city leaders will also give presentations including Department of Military and Veterans Affairs Commissioner Major General Thomas Katkus, Fairbanks North Star Borough Mayor Luke Hopkins and North Pole Mayor Doug Isaacson.  

Senator Bill Wielechowski and Representative Dan Saddler, Co-Chairs of the Joint Armed Services Committee, called the meeting to review statewide concern of possible rounds of base closures and realignments, relocation of the F-16 aggressor squadron and to develop strategies for retention of military installations in Alaska.

“It is imperative the Alaska Legislature takes action to support Alaska’s military bases and personnel,” said Senator Wielechowski.  “Alaska’s military force is of critical importance to our economy with 32 military installations, more than 23,000 active duty service members and more than 37,000 active family members, contributing approximately 13 percent to Alaska’s economy.”

“As the Pentagon looks to cut its budget while reorienting toward future potential threats in the Asia and Mideast theaters, we have an obligation to consider whether any estimated savings from reducing capabilities in Alaska would ultimately be worth the risks to national security,” said Rep. Saddler. “This meeting should help us address some of these questions, and guide Alaska’s strategy in addressing these challenges.”

WHO:  Joint Armed Services Committee

WHAT: Hearing on Upcoming Base Realignment and Closures

WHERE: Anchorage Legislative Information Office, 716 W. Fourth Ave., Room 220

WHEN: Tuesday, June 26, 2012, 9 a.m. to 11 a.m.

For more information, please call Senator Wielechowski at 907-242-1558 or Kendra Kloster at 907-269-0120.

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