DELEGATION REACTS TO BRAC ANNOUNCEMENT
WASHINGTON, D.C. – The Idaho Congressional Delegation reacted today to the release of the Department of Defense’s (DoD) list of proposed closures in the latest Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) round. Delegation members stressed that the proposed list must still be approved by the BRAC Commission later this year, as well as Congress and the President.
“This is just the beginning of the BRAC process,” the Delegation said. “The fat lady isn’t singing yet. Before any closures or realignments take place, the nonpartisan BRAC Commission, Congress, and the President must approve the list. The final outcome could be much different from this initial proposal, and we are committed to protecting Idaho jobs and Idaho families who may be affected.
“As part of the process, we hope Secretary Rumsfeld and the DoD will explain the rationale and the need for this restructuring to the American people, as the reasons are not readily apparent in a time of war.
“To the best of our knowledge, Idaho is the only state in the nation where training ranges are expanding, not shrinking. We are hopeful the BRAC Commission will agree that these national security assets have clearly been overlooked by DoD.
“That being said, we are encouraged that no military installations in Idaho are targeted for closure, and that Mountain Home Air Force Base will be receiving a more advanced model of the F-15, the F-15E. Some states may lose thousands of military and civilian personnel, but we will work together in Congress to keep these jobs and these families in Idaho.”
The BRAC Commission must reject, modify, or approve the DoD list by September 8, 2005. After that, the list must be approved or rejected by both the House and Senate, and signed by President Bush.