Albany prepares for BRAC 2005 - WALB.com, Albany News, Weather, Sports

Albany prepares for BRAC 2005

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October 16, 2002

Albany -- Even as America moves closer to possible war in Iraq, there is talk of closing up to 100 United States military bases by 2007.

Albany economic leaders have already begun work to make sure the Albany Marine Corps Logistics Base will not be on that closure list. The economic impact of the Albany Marine Corps Logistics Base is close to a half billion dollars a year.

 City and county leaders are forming a committee to answer any question from the Base and Realignment and Closure Commission if M.C.L.B. is considered for closure. Chamber of Commerce President Tim Martin said "To gather facts and figures and statistics to present a solid, positive case that of all the military installations in the world, or in the United States, MCLB Albany is going to be at the top."

 In 1993 and 1995 Albany community leaders joined with Marine Base commanders to put up a strong defense of the M.C.L.B. operation, and keep it from being closed by the Department of Defense. Congress has said 100 more of the 450 military installations in the country should be phased out in 2005 and 2007. Community leaders are going to bat early to make sure Albany's military base stays open.

 Economic Development Commission Chairman Jeff Sinyard said "Bottom of the ninth and the bases loaded is not the way we do things in Albany and Dougherty County. We take this very seriously, because this is going to make a huge effect on our region if things don't go the way we need them to go."

There are nearly three thousand civilian employees at the Albany Marine Base, and approximately 600 Marines stationed there. The year 2000 payroll of the Marines at the Albany base was $40 million. The civilian payroll for that same year was more than $103 million.

posted at 4:20 by jimw@walb.com