Following Portman's Urging, $15 Million for New Toledo Air Base Hangars Included in Senate Armed Services Committee's NDAA
WASHINGTON, D.C. —U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) announced today that the Senate Armed Services Committee FY 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) authorizes $15 million to support construction of upgraded fighter aircraft hangars for the 180th Fighter Wing in Toledo, Ohio. Last month, Portman sent a letter to Senate Armed Services Chairman John McCain (R-AZ) and Ranking Member Jack Reed (D-RI) urging them to include this funding in the NDAA. The 180th Fighter Wing carries out the critical Aerospace Control Alert (ACA) mission to protect America’s airspace. The FY 2018 NDAA is now ready for consideration by the full Senate.
“Defending the homeland remains the number one national security mission for our military, and the 180th Fighter Wing in Toledo is tasked with carrying out one of our nation’s most important homeland defense missions, protecting our skies through the Aerospace Control Alert. It is critical that the Airmen at the 180th have the best equipment available,” said Portman. “The current ACA hangars must be replaced – they are outdated and don’t provide the protection needed for the aircraft and the airmen maintaining them. I am pleased Chairman McCain and Ranking Member Reed included this important funding in the NDAA, and I look forward to ensuring the dedicated men and women serving our country in Toledo have the resources they need.”
Full text of the letter from June 23, 2017 can be found below and here.
Dear Chairman McCain and Ranking Member Reed,
As you weigh our national security priorities during the consideration of the Fiscal Year 2018 National Defense Authorization Act, I write to request your support for construction of upgraded Alert Complex Hangars for the 180th Fighter Wing (180th FW) in Toledo, Ohio.
The 180th FW’s strategic location in the northern Midwest places it within 600 miles of 60 percent of the U.S. population. Accordingly, since October 2008 the 180th FW has been charged with the 24/7/365 Aerospace Control Alert (ACA) mission protecting skies over major metropolitan areas, railway transportation hubs, nuclear power plants, freshwater ports and shipping lanes, and has done so with distinction. The ACA mission is under the direction of North American Air Defense Command (NORAD) and is an enduring Homeland Defense mission at Toledo.
The current temporary ACA shelters must be replaced due to the near term expiration of their life expectancy, inadequate fire suppression capabilities, improper design specifications for supporting U.S. fighter aircraft, and the overall reductions these factors cause to the ability of the 180th FW to carry out a critical homeland protection alert mission. In addition, constructing new hangars was found to be the most cost effective option. The current temporary shelters are extremely expensive and are particularly costly to heat in the winter.
This project is a high priority for NORAD – USNORTHCOM and the Air National Guard. It was also included on the list of Air National Guard FY2018 MILCON priorities as a $15M project for FY18. Funds have already been received for the design phase of the project.
Defending the homeland remains the number one national security mission for our military. Ensuring adequate funding for this request will not only maximize readiness and support a critical national and homeland security mission, but it will also increase efficiencies and produce real cost-savings. Thank you for your attention to this important project.