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Enrolled HJR 13: Urging the United States Department of the Army to maintain and strengthen the current level of its combat-capable structure in the state and not to reduce personnel at Fort Wainwright and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.

00 Enrolled HJR 13                                                                                                         
01 Urging the United States Department of the Army to maintain and strengthen the current level                            
02 of its combat-capable structure in the state and not to reduce personnel at Fort Wainwright                             
03 and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.                                                                                    
04                                         _______________                                                                 
05 BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA:                                                             
06      WHEREAS the United States Department of the Army is preparing for structural                                     
07 reductions to its forces in 2020, and it would be in the best interest of Alaska and the nation                         
08 for the United States Department of the Army to determine that no personnel reductions be                               
09 made for Fort Wainwright in Fairbanks and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage;                                 
10 and                                                                                                                     
11      WHEREAS Headquarters, United States Department of the Army, is continuing to                                     
12 reduce the maximum number of active duty personnel from a wartime peak of 570,000                                       
13 personnel to 450,000 personnel by the end of the United States government's fiscal year 2017;                           
14 and                                                                                                                     
15      WHEREAS the United States Department of the Army must reduce and reorganize                                      
16 the structure of its combat-capable forces to achieve the fiscal reductions required by P.L.                            
17 112-25 (Budget Control Act of 2011), as amended; and                                                                    
01      WHEREAS the reduction and reorganization must be consistent with the national                                    
02 military strategy issued by the chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; and                                                 
03      WHEREAS General Order Number 2012-01 of Headquarters, United States                                              
04 Department of the Army, directs the United States Army to conduct listening sessions at 30                              
05 military installations across the United States that are being evaluated for potential personnel                        
06 reductions; and                                                                                                         
07      WHEREAS the primary purpose of the listening sessions is to provide members of                                   
08 affected communities with an opportunity to comment on the reductions under consideration                               
09 in their community; and                                                                                                 
10      WHEREAS Anchorage and its vicinity could lose up to 5,300 military and civilian                                  
11 positions at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson; and                                                                       
12      WHEREAS Fort Wainwright could lose up to 5,800 military and civilian positions;                                  
13 and                                                                                                                     
14      WHEREAS the nation's primary concern must always be national defense and the                                     
15 security of the United States, including Alaska; and                                                                    
16      WHEREAS the geographic location of Alaska, including its access to polar air routes,                             
17 provides a vital strategic advantage for current and future United States Department of the                             
18 Army missions, force mobilizations, offensive operations, and defensive operations; and                                 
19      WHEREAS Alaska's strategic global position has been recognized since World War                                   
20 II as providing a prime location to defend the United States against the potential aggression of                        
21 hostile nations, including Russia and North Korea; and                                                                  
22      WHEREAS, from bases in the state, United States Army combat forces can rapidly                                   
23 deploy by air or sea to areas in and around the Pacific, Asia, and Europe and can cross the                             
24 Arctic to Europe faster than by flying from the East Coast of the United States; and                                    
25      WHEREAS the six major military installations, more than 23,000 active duty service                               
26 members, and more than 37,000 family members of active duty service members in Alaska                                   
27 make the military presence in the state economically vital to Alaska; and                                               
28      WHEREAS the military programs of the University of Alaska Anchorage support                                      
29 military personnel and their families throughout the area served by the University of Alaska                            
30 Anchorage, including by providing extension centers on Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson                                  
31 that offer educational opportunities to about 1,000 military and civilian students with classes                         
01 designed so that students can fit coursework into their busy schedules using conventional                               
02 educational environments and electronic and other distance delivery systems; and                                        
03      WHEREAS the Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex consists of 63,000 square miles                                   
04 of training areas and provides a training and readiness complex that is unique in the world;                            
05 and                                                                                                                     
06      WHEREAS Red Flag Alaska, a series of Pacific Air Forces commander-directed field                                 
07 training exercises, hosts allied nations from around the world in the unrestricted air space                            
08 needed for the exercises that is found in Alaska, but that is quickly becoming a premium in                             
09 the United States; and                                                                                                  
10      WHEREAS the proximity of United States Air Force and Alaska Air National Guard                                   
11 units to Fort Wainwright and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson provides joint training                                    
12 opportunities for the United States Army units stationed in Alaska and outside Alaska; and                              
13      WHEREAS United States Army and United States Air Force facilities are located                                    
14 together at Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson, providing a unique and efficient deployment                                
15 base for the two military forces; and                                                                                   
16      WHEREAS Alaska has demonstrated its strong commitment to the United States                                       
17 Army by investing more than $88,000,000 in transportation infrastructure to provide the                                 
18 United States Army with access throughout the year to training areas for maneuvers in the                               
19 Joint Pacific Alaska Range Complex; and                                                                                 
20      WHEREAS Alaska is the only state in the nation with direct access to the Arctic, and                             
21 the United States Army soldiers in Alaska are experts in extreme cold weather operations; and                           
22      WHEREAS Alaska is home to the United States Army's Cold Regions Test Center                                      
23 and has been the site of the United States Army's Arctic and cold weather testing since before                          
24 World War II; and                                                                                                       
25      WHEREAS Alaska serves as a site activation command for the United States Missile                               
26 Defense Agency; and                                                                                                     
27      WHEREAS the United States Department of Defense recognizes Alaska as an                                          
28 important strategic location and has recently increased and upgraded its missile defense                                
29 capability in the state;                                                                                                
30      BE IT RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature strongly urges the United States                                
31 Department of the Army to maintain and strengthen the current level of its combat-capable                               
01 structure in Alaska; and be it                                                                                          
02      FURTHER RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature encourages the United                                         
03 States Department of the Army not to reduce personnel at Fort Wainwright in Fairbanks and                               
04 Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in Anchorage.                                                                           
05      COPIES of this resolution shall be sent to the Honorable Barack Obama, President of                              
06 the United States; the Honorable Joseph R. Biden, Jr., Vice-President of the United States and                          
07 President of the U.S. Senate; the Honorable Ashton B. Carter, United States Secretary of                                
08 Defense; the Honorable John M. McHugh, United States Secretary of the Army; General                                     
09 Martin E. Dempsey, Chair of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; and the Honorable Lisa Murkowski                                 
10 and the Honorable Dan Sullivan, U.S. Senators, and the Honorable Don Young, U.S.                                        
11 Representative, members of the Alaska delegation in Congress.