The Free Lance-Star - Push Continues To Move Civilian, Military Jobs To A. P. Hill
By Dan Telvock
High-ranking politicians continue to put pressure on the Secretary of the Army to relocate 300 jobs to Fort A.P. Hill in Caroline County.
The Asymmetric Warfare Group, which includes the 300 civilian and military jobs, is currently at Fort Meade in Maryland. Training exercises for the anti-terrorism group are held at A.P. Hill.
U.S. Sen. John Warner, R-Va., was first to urge the Army to have both elements of the group at A.P. Hill.
Last week, U.S. Sen. Jim Webb, D-Va. and Rep. Jo Ann Davis, R-1st District, reiterated the message in a letter to Secretary of the Army Preston M. Green III and Army Chief of Staff Gen. George W. Casey Jr.
They stated that splitting the group's command and training hinders its ability to develop, test and employ new tactics to address asymmetric threats.
"In our view, a decision to deliberately divide the leadership, operations and training of this organization would be contrary to current Army policies to consolidate missions," the letter stated.
A.P. Hill is a training facility for the Army. But the three legislators stated that the continued viability of these training ranges largely depends on the military addressing the economic concerns of the local communities.
Caroline and Spotsylvania supervisors have met with Army officials in an effort to bring the jobs to A.P. Hill to help with their economic challenges.
According to local leaders, the Army split the group because of claims that the area near A.P. Hill doesn't have sufficient housing, medical services, jobs for spouses, or schools.
Warner, Webb and Davis strongly disagreed. They asked the Army to justify its decision.