SJR 14: Urging the United States Department of the Army to maintain the current level of its combat-capable structure in the state and apply the No Action Alternative provision to both Fort Wainwright and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson.
00 SENATE JOINT RESOLUTION NO. 14 01 Urging the United States Department of the Army to maintain the current level of its 02 combat-capable structure in the state and apply the No Action Alternative provision to 03 both Fort Wainwright and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson. 04 BE IT RESOLVED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF ALASKA: 05 WHEREAS the Supplemental Programmatic Environmental Assessment for Army 06 2020 Force Structure Realignment under which the United States Department of the Army is 07 preparing for a 2020 force structure realignment contains a No Action Alternative provision 08 that is appropriate for both Fort Wainwright in Fairbanks and Joint Base Elmendorf- 09 Richardson in Anchorage; and 10 WHEREAS Headquarters, United States Department of the Army, is continuing to 11 reduce the maximum number of active duty personnel from a wartime peak of 570,000 12 personnel to 450,000 personnel by the end of the United States government's fiscal year 2017; 13 and 14 WHEREAS the United States Department of the Army must reduce and 15 reorganize the structure of its combat-capable forces to achieve the fiscal reductions
01 required by P.L. 112-25 (Budget Control Act of 2011), as amended; and 02 WHEREAS the reduction and reorganization must be consistent with the national 03 military strategy issued by the chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff; and 04 WHEREAS the United States Army will be conducting 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 an 08 affected community with an opportunity to comment on the reductions under consideration in 09 their community; and 10 WHEREAS Anchorage could lose up to 5,300 military and civilian positions at Joint 11 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 Department of the Army missions, 18 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 and Europe and can cross the Arctic to 24 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 important 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 the United States Army and the United States Air Force 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 the current level of its combat-capable structure in
01 Alaska; and be it 02 FURTHER RESOLVED that the Alaska State Legislature encourages the United 03 States Department of the Army to apply the No Action Alternative provision in the 04 Supplemental Programmatic Environmental Assessment for Army 2020 Force Structure 05 Realignment to both Fort Wainwright in Fairbanks and Joint Base Elmendorf-Richardson in 06 Anchorage. 07 COPIES of this resolution shall be sent to the Honorable Chuck Hagel, United States 08 Secretary of Defense; the Honorable John M. McHugh, United States Secretary of the Army; 09 and the Honorable Lisa Murkowski and the Honorable Dan Sullivan, U.S. Senators, and the 10 Honorable Don Young, U.S. Representative, members of the Alaska delegation in Congress.