Military & Veterans’ Affairs Committee Hears Testimony Regarding BRAC
Trenton – The Senate Military & Veterans’ Affairs Committee received testimony from invited speakers today on military base closure and realignment (BRAC) in New Jersey. The testimony was focused on how New Jersey can avoid the closure of any of the five remaining military bases.
“We’ve seen what happens when the federal government closes military bases,” said Chair of the Senate Military & Veterans’ Affairs Committee Senator Vin Gopal (D-Monmouth). “When Fort Monmouth closed we saw local business suffer, community jobs disappear and a massive swath of land go unused and overgrown. We have to ensure that this does not happen to any other community in New Jersey. I plan to work closely with the speakers today, along with others, to keep our bases open, strong and pertinent to our national defense.”
The five remaining bases in New Jersey are: the Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst; the 177th Fighter Wing at Atlantic City Airport in Egg Harbor Township; the Coast Guard Station at Cape May; the Picatinny Arsenal in Morris County; and the Earle Naval Weapons Station in Monmouth County.
Senator Troy Singleton joined the committee to testify on the importance of supporting military bases in our communities.
“It is incumbent upon all of us – whether we are representing the federal, state, or county governments – to do everything in our power to ensure the long-term viability of Joint Base McGuire-Dix-Lakehurst,” said Senator Singleton (D-Burlington). “These bases are too important to our nation’s security, and our regional economy, to simply do nothing and risk them landing on the BRAC lists. That is why we’ve been working collaboratively on the Route 539 overpass project, which will help to expand the mission of the Joint Base.”
Invited speakers included: Defense Enhancement Coalition & former Colonel Rich Eckstein, Congressman Kim’s staffer Antoinette Miles, Burlington County Freeholder Daniel O’Connell and Bruce Steadman from the Fort Monmouth Economic Revitalization Authority, among others.