Air National Guardsmen from six states have potentially saved the Air Force some $31 million by stepping up to move a radar research tower from Rome, N.Y., to Springfield ANGB, Ohio. Mandated under BRAC 2005, the Air Force Research Lab set out to consolidate four radar towers near Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio. With initial contract estimates as high as $35 million, AFRL sensors directorate officials turned to the New York Air National Guard’s 213th Engineering Installation Squadron in 2007. Harnessing Air Guard manpower from across the nation, the squadron estimated that it could complete the project for just $4.2 million. In late May, the Air Guardsmen, supported by active duty airmen, completed the disassembly, move, and reassembly process at Springfield, all for $600,000 under the unit’s cost projection. “The underlying theme behind BRAC is achieving savings for the taxpayers. This effort is one of our biggest success stories to date,” said Frank Albanese, AFRL’s BRAC director. (Springfield report by Derek Kaufman)
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.