Is the Battle Over?

According to a report by the Northwest Florida Daily News, the Air Force last week reached a settlement with the city of Valparaiso over basing F-35 fighters at Eglin Air Force Base. The city had opposed the plan to establish the initial F-35 joint training schoolhouse at Eglin, lodging at lease two lawsuits and refusing to endorse USAF’s joint land use study. City commissioners on March 1 agreed to the settlement terms, and Mayor Bruce Arnold signed, meeting a court ordered deadline. That set the stage for Okaloosa County, which favored the F-35 schoolhouse venture, to withdraw its lawsuit against Valparaiso. According to another Daily News report, the Okaloosa lawsuit helped pressure Valparaiso into settling with USAF. However, the Air Force did modify its plans for the schoolhouse and is still considering just how many F-35s to install at Eglin.