Defense

December 14, 2012

Lajes Field drawdown as part of force structuring announced


Department of Defense officials announced Dec. 13 that Lajes Field will transition from an air base wing to an air base group with a reduction of more than 400 military personnel and 500 family members by the end of fiscal year 2014.

“The drawdown of the 65th Air Base Wing is part of a larger Air Force effort to shape the force,” said Col. Chris Bargery, 65th Air Base Wing commander.

The Secretary of Defense has mandated cost-cutting efficiencies across the U.S. forces. In turn, the United States Air Force identified potential structure changes to fulfill the mandate. Force-structure changes at Lajes Field are estimated to garner savings of $35 million annually.

“The U.S. force posture is being adjusted to meet fiscal challenges, while maintaining a strong, capable relationship with our Portuguese allies and partners,” said Bargery. “Lajes Field’s strategic mission is important and valuable, and will not change. But, the footprint with which we accomplish our mission will change.”

Services will be reduced proportionally to support one-year “unaccompanied” tour lengths for Airmen. Upon completion of the drawdown, a Department of Defense Dependents School will no longer operate at Lajes Field.

Some changes to facilities are scheduled to begin immediately. The goal is to accomplish right-sizing of costs, personnel and facilities by October 2014.

The 65th Air Base Wing will deliberately plan the reduction of its footprint at Lajes Field. Reduction of to the number of military and civilian employment positions required to meet the new group’s mission will be conducted in a phased approach, said Bargery.

An immediate elimination of employment positions is not being planned.

“We have yet to officially identify the military and civilian positions that will be eliminated as part of this drawdown. Our intent is to scrutinize every, single position and fully understand how it helps us meet our mission,” said Bargery. “Just as importantly, we will do our best to support and help prepare anyone affected by this transition. We value and recognize the relationships that we have with our local national employees and all Azoreans affected by this change.”

Lajes Field is scheduled to achieve its end-strength in personnel and footprint by mid-2014.

“We expect all families to depart by summer 2014 or shortly thereafter,” said Bargery.

“We are committed to implementing these changes in the right way, and to taking care of our Airmen, families and Portuguese local national employees throughout.”

Portuguese Air Base #4, commonly known as Lajes Field, is a Portuguese Air Force installation. The 65th Air Base Wing and other U.S. military organizations and support functions are hosted at the base by Portugal’s Headquarters Azores Air Zone and Air Base #4 staff.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

Headlines January 28, 2015

News: Panel will propose new military retirement system - The long-awaited report on military compensation set to drop Thursday will propose fundamental changes to military retirement and health care benefits, according to several people familiar with the report. Source: DOD to request $585 billion for fiscal 2016 - The Department of Defense is preparing to submit a...
 
 

News Briefs January 28, 2015

Defense contractor to pay $2 million to settle claims A Northern California defense contractor will pay the federal government $2 million to settle claims about its manufacturing of parts for remote-controlled aircraft. The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Sacramento says Sacramento-based Composite Engineering Inc. agreed to pay the money to end allegations that it artificially inflated...
 
 
Navy photograph

USS Roosevelt marks 200,000 trap

Navy photograph An F/A-18F Super Hornet flown by Capt. Daniel Grieco, commanding officer of the aircraft carrier USS Theodore Roosevelt (CVN 71), and Capt. Benjamin Hewlett, deputy commander of Carrier Air Wing (CVW) 1, complet...
 

 
Navy photograph by PO1 William Larned

USS California returns from maiden deployment

Navy photograph by PO1 William Larned The Virginia-class attack submarine USS California (SSN 781) returns from its maiden deployment to its homeport at Naval Submarine Base New London. Under the command of Cmdr. Shawn Huey, Ca...
 
 
Army photograph

Army proves new watercraft capabilities

Army photograph Marine Corps assets are loaded onto the USNS Sgt. Matej Kocak (T-AK 3005), from an U.S. Army Landing Craft Utility, or LCU, USAV Port Hudson during port operations, at White Beach Naval Base, Jan. 22, 2015. Sold...
 
 

Orbital stockholders approve merger with ATK’s aerospace, defense groups

Orbital Sciences Corporation announced Jan. 27 that at a special meeting, the company’s stockholders voted overwhelmingly to approve the proposed merger with the Aerospace and Defense Groups of Alliant Techsystems Inc., pursuant to the definitive transaction agreement dated April 28, 2014. Approximately 99 percent of the votes cast at the special meeting voted in favor...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>