Monday, March 30, 2015
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Travis boosters wary of defense budget proposals

By
From page A1 | February 26, 2014 |

FAIRFIELD — Travis Air Force Base is not expected to suffer much from the proposed 2015 Department of Defense budget, but what happens with proposed cuts to the Air Force’s A-10 attack jet could affect how likely the KC-10 Extender fleet is to be retired soon.

Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel, in a Monday press conference, said that retirement of the A-10 and the U-2 reconnaissance jet are two of the cuts included in the Defense Department’s proposal.

“It is interesting that Hagel warned that if the budget sequester is not repealed, we will see the retirement of the KC-10 in 2016,” said Bud Ross of the Travis Community Consortium, the alliance of local governments and businesses that aims to protect Travis Air Force Base.

Ross said that if the sequestration is re-enacted, “it will be devastating.”

The Air Force has already floated the idea of retiring the KC-10 fleet, nearly half of which is stationed at Travis. In response, the consortium kicked into action, lobbying to keep Travis from suffering personnel and mission losses if that happens.

Ross pointed out that previous efforts to retire the A-10 ran into tough opposition from members of Congress whose districts contained bases where the A-10s were stationed.

“The politics of that aircraft is that 16 states have a voice in keeping the A-10, including Army and Guard Reserve,” Ross said. “I can’t see the A-10 being retired. If you can’t retire the A-10, then we could see the KC-10 (retirement) being moved up.”

Paul Hirsh, the Travis Community Consortium’s defense consultant, shares a similar view. He said he expects to see “a knock-down, drag-out fight” in Congress from representatives whose districts have bases with A-10 squadrons.

Additional cuts on the table

Hagel also proposed reducing the active military by 13 percent and taking another 5 percent from the Reserve. He also wants to limit pay raises for rank-and-file personnel to 1 percent and freeze pay for flag officers to 2014 levels. He still plans to continue buying the F-35A strike fighter, the Long Range Strike Bomber and the KC-46A tanker.

Hirsh said that generally, the Air Force is going to have to operate with less funding, but Hagel’s proposal does not really adversely affect Travis.

“Overall, the Air Force is going to lose people. Their force structure is going to go down,” Hirsh said.

“If they are going to cut civilian and military operations, you have to assume that is going to be fairly evenly distributed,” Ross said of the manpower cuts. “We are going to have to see. They are already doing early retirement boards for officers and noncommissioned officers.”

The Defense Department is asking for another base realignment and closure round in 2017 to eliminate excess facilities, but Hirsh expects that Congress will “kick that can down the road” for a future Congress.

Ross also said that the budget that Hagel is proposing and the budget that the president finally signs could be two very different things.

In the meantime, the Travis Community Consortium will keep a close eye on what the Defense Department and Congress do with the military’s budget.

Plan for the future

The Travis Community Consortium has set a four-year, eight-point strategic plan. The top points are to seek public assurances that Travis will get bridge missions that will backfill the loss of the KC-10, that manpower levels will stay constant at the base and a push to have Travis keep its air refueling mission.

That means cornering congressional representatives and Air Force leaders, with lobbying trips to Washington, D.C. and Air Mobility Command at Scott Air Force Base, Ill.

“We will watch very intently what transpires,” Ross said of what he described as an “extremely important period of intense scrutiny that will be required to look out for the best interests of Travis.”

Hirsh said the consortium is realistic in the expectation that there will be changes at Travis, with the expected departure of its KC-10s. But, he said, the consortium’s mission is to make sure Travis maintains a solid position to bed down the next generation, the KC-46s.

“From our standpoint, the KC-10s will eventually be coming out of the Air Force and the (Travis Community Consortium)’s efforts will be to make the case that Travis is the best base with its geopolitical location, good infrastructure and no encroachment,” Hirsh said.

Reach Ian Thompson at 427-6976 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/ithompsondr.

Ian Thompson

Ian Thompson

Ian Thompson has worked for the Daily Republic longer than he cares to remember. A native of Oregon and a graduate of the University of Oregon, he pines for the motherland still. He covers Vacaville and Travis Air Force Base for the Daily Republic. He is an avid military history buff, wargamer and loves the great outdoors.
LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 1 comment

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • Rich GiddensFebruary 26, 2014 - 12:14 pm

    They can whine all they want, but they are not in the driver's seat regarding it. That s the US Senate. The national sentiment is to now cut military installations in Boxer and Feinstein's districts too like 1993 with Mare Island and Alameda closings.

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

2 drivers killed in same area, an hour apart

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1, 4 Comments

 
Easter activities, events abundant

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A1 | Gallery

Christians begin Holy Week with Palm Sunday celebrations

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A1, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
My guide to dining out

By Tony Wade | From Page: A2, 4 Comments

Local governments post week’s meeting times

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A3

 
Top young spellers to compete for Solano title

By Glen Faison | From Page: A3

Police investigate shooting off North Texas Street

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3, 6 Comments | Gallery

 
Vallejo police seek leads in weekend homicide

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: A3

Biz Buzz: PAL receives donation from glass company

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10 | Gallery

 
Biz Buzz: Wiseman officer names Perez to key post

By Kevin W. Green | From Page: A10

 
Biz Buzz: Re/Max hires new Realtor

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A10

.

US / World

Police ramp up rail-crossing citations after recent crashes

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1

 
Analysis finds unequal pay for women on California Capitol

By The Associated Press | From Page: A3

Songwriter injured in California crash; motorcyclist killed

By The Associated Press | From Page: A3

 
Taylor Swift wins artist of the year at iHeartRadio Awards

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Police: 2 bodies found in NYC building explosion rubble

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Grandma is a centerfold: Rest home bares all for calendar

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

 
Islamic State group beheads 8 Shiites in Syria’s Hama

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Waving fronds around the world, Christians mark Palm Sunday

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Air Canada plane makes hard landing short of Halifax runway

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Small tsunami generated in Pacific after earthquake

By The Associated Press | From Page: A9

 
.

Living

Today in History: March 30, 2015

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

 
Community Calendar: March 30, 2015

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

Horoscopes: March 30, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B6

 
Parenting: If a father is abusive, a mother must act

By The Washington Post | From Page: B8

 
Horoscopes: March 31, 2015

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: B8

.

Entertainment

TVGrid March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A10

 
TVGrid March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A11

Michelle Obama declares ‘Black Girls Rock!’

By The Associated Press | From Page: A11, 2 Comments

 
.

Sports

Duke back in Final Four after 66-52 win over Gonzaga

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
Spartans Final Four-bound after 76-70 OT win over Louisville

By The Associated Press | From Page: B1

 
South Carolina earns 1st Final Four berth, beats FSU 80-74

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Turner says Saturday regional finals highest-rated in decade

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Apology for wrong anthem for El Salvador before game in US

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Montoya holds off Power to give Penske 1-2 sweep at St. Pete

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Stanford’s Randle chases school scoring record, title at NIT

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Hamlin wins for 25th time, and fifth time at Martinsville

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Hamlin wins for 25th time, and fifth time at Martinsville

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Jimmy Walker wins hometown Texas Open

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Oakland OF Josh Reddick won’t be ready for start of season

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

California Chrome heads to Britain, to race at Royal Ascot

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Vettel wins Malaysian GP to end Mercedes streak

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Joe Gibbs on son: most courageous person I’ve been around

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
Chodounsky defends slalom title at US Alpine Championships

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

Cain goes 4 innings in Giants win over LA

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

 
Graveman pitches into 7th inning as A’s beat Brewers 7-0

By The Associated Press | From Page: B3

.

Business

.

Obituaries

Robert Roberts

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
Janice Jewel Thompson

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

.

Comics

Garfield March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Dilbert March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Baby Blues March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Frank and Ernest March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

B.C. March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Wizard of Id March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Beetle Bailey March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Rose is Rose March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Peanuts March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Zits March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Blondie March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Pickles March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Get Fuzzy March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Sally Forth March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

For Better or Worse March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

 
Baldo March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B5

Sudoku March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Bridge March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Word Sleuth March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Crossword March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

Cryptoquote March 30

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Pickles March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Zits March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Sally Forth March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Get Fuzzy March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Wizard of Id March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Baby Blues March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Frank and Ernest March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

B.C. March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Blondie March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Peanuts March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Baldo March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Rose is Rose March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Beetle Bailey March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

For Better or Worse March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Dilbert March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

Garfield March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B7

 
Crossword March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B8

Word Sleuth March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B8

 
Bridge March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B8

Sudoku March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B8

 
Cryptoquote March 31

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B8