Murkowski Fends Off ‘Beat the Clock’ Tactic, Gets One Month Eielson Hearings Reprieve
Air Force Takes Suggestion from Senator and Congressman Young, Relents on Compressed Timetable
ANCHORAGE, AK – Senator Lisa Murkowski today welcomed the news that the United States Air Force will delay hearings on the Draft Environmental Impact Statement regarding their proposed downsizing of Eielson Air Force Base. The hearings were initially scheduled to begin next Monday – meaning only ten business days after the DEIS release – but now will be postponed until the week of July 15th, according to the Air Force’s official Eielson DEIS website.
“While I strongly disagree with the findings and glaring omissions of the DEIS presented by the Air Force ten days ago and consider it the latest attempt at a backdoor BRAC, I appreciate the fact they listened to Alaskans. This extension will give us a full month to lay out a strong case refuting their short-sighted argument and paint the complete picture. I encourage every concerned Alaskan to join this cause and point out that ‘America Needs Eielson AFB’ in its current or more robust form, to stem the threat from the Asia-Pacific region.”
Today’s decision comes after Senator Murkowski and Congressman Don Young sent a letter (attached) to the USAF on May 31st criticizing its ‘beat the clock’ tactic to rush hearings within 10 business days – asking for more time for Alaskans views to formulate the most robust argument against the DEIS. The Air Force has yet to announce exact dates, times and locations in Palmer, Anchorage, Fairbanks and North Pole for the hearings.