Following a tour of the 911th Airlift Wing, Congressman Tim Murphy (PA-18) and Pennsylvania Auditor General Jack Wagner today announced they would continue to lead efforts to save the 911th by outlining in a formal letter to Defense Secretary Leon Panetta the base's unique strategic value and its impact on the local economy. Messrs. Murphy and Wagner conducted a fact-finding review of the base today.
"If the Pentagon undertakes a thorough cost-benefit analysis, they'll learn what Southwestern Pennsylvania military families already know: the 911th is efficient with taxpayer money, effective in service to the Air Force, and essential to our national security," said Congressman Tim Murphy. No comparable base in the country does more with less or is as well-situated in responding to an emergency at home or abroad."
"Militarily and economically, the 911th Air Lift Wing is a strategic asset that needs to remain in Western Pennsylvania," said Pennsylvania Auditor General Jack Wagner.
History of the 911th Airlift Wing:
In February 2012, the United States Air Force proposed to retire more than 200 aircraft and eliminate 9,100 positions impacting 149 U.S. installations. Under these cuts, only one base would be closed: the 911th Air Reserve Station. Through a series of meetings with Air Force officials, formal requests for information, communication with Pentagon officials, data analysis, and community engagement, Congressman Tim Murphy and the Southwestern Pennsylvania delegation discovered the Air Force proposal relied upon inaccurate data and faulty assumptions about the base's capabilities, space, and cost structure.
After legislative language he authored to block the base's closure passed the House of Representatives, in June 2012, Defense Secretary Leon Panetta announced all force structure adjustments would be suspended through the 2013 fiscal year deliberation process. However, efforts to save the base for the long-term remain. To learn more about Murphy's efforts on behalf of our region's veterans and service members, visit http://Murphy.house.gov/911th