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S.C. Military Base Task Force to Distribute $200,000 in
web posted March 8, 2013
COLUMBIA – Amid fiscal uncertainty in
Washington, the state of South Carolina is committing financial
resources and taking other measures to protect federal military
installations located here. These actions include allocating $50,000 to
each of the state’s four military communities – Beaufort, Charleston,
Columbia and Sumter – to support their ongoing base-preservation
State funds totaling $200,000 are being distributed next week by the
S.C. Military Base Task Force. The funds will be distributed during
· Monday (March
11) at 11:30 a.m. at the Charleston Metro Chamber of Commerce (4500
Leeds Ave., Suite 100; North Charleston) (843-577-2510);
· Monday (March
11) at 2:30 p.m. at the Beaufort Regional Chamber of Commerce (713
Craven St.; Beaufort) (843-525-8500);
· Tuesday (March
12) at 10 a.m. at the Greater Columbia Chamber of Commerce (930
Richland St.; Columbia) (803-733-1155); and
· Tuesday (March
12) at 1:30 p.m. at the Greater Sumter Chamber of Commerce (32 East
Calhoun St.; Sumter) (803-775-1231).
Officials from the Military Base Task Force will attend each news
conference. Local chamber and military policy officials also will be on
hand at each of their respective news conferences.
The officials will discuss the base-preservation funding in the
backdrop of ongoing across-the-board federal spending reductions known
as “sequestration,” which carries vital defense and economic
The S.C. Military Base Task Force works to preserve and enhance the
state’s military resources. The Task Force was created through an
executive order by former Gov. Mark Sanford, and reconstituted by an
executive order of Gov. Nikki Haley.
State Comptroller General Richard Eckstrom, who serves as chairman of
the S.C. Military Base Task Force, expressed great appreciation to the
General Assembly for appropriating these funds to support the efforts
of the Task Force and the state’s four military communities.
“This has been a real team effort. There’s been excellent cooperation
between the communities and the state,” Eckstrom said. “Sen. Hugh
Leatherman has made sure we’ve had the resources we’ve needed to do the
South Carolina’s military installations contribute greatly to South
Carolina’s economy and to national security.
The state is home to eight military installations, the largest of which
include Fort Jackson, Shaw Air Force Base, Joint Base Charleston,
Marine Corps Air Station Beaufort, and Marine Corps Recruit Depot
In 2011, the state’s military installations, the S.C. National Guard,
and in-state defense contractors generated $15.7 billion in combined
economic activity in South Carolina, according to a study by the S.C.
Department of Commerce.
Released in November 2012, the study showed that the state’s military
sector supported more than 138,000 jobs in 2011.
The economic impact taken alone does not convey the significance of the
state’s military resources.
The installations contribute significantly to national security and
provide economic benefits to the military. Having the 3rd Army
headquarters co-located at Shaw Air Force Base exemplifies the economic
contributions the state’s installations provide the military.
Joint Base Charleston – home to Air Force, Navy, Army, Marine Corps,
Coast Guard, Homeland Security and other Defense Department missions –
is another example.
Across-the-board federal spending cuts, known as “sequestration,” began
being implemented last week. These cuts are expected to total $85
billion this fiscal year and approximately $1 trillion over the next
The military is slated to absorb half of them, on top of nearly $500
billion in other cuts in military funding previously authorized.
To cushion the state’s installations from these reductions, the
Military Base Task Force is taking other steps in addition to
allocating $200,000 for base-preservation efforts in the state.
Among other actions, the Task Force is actively supporting several
bills pending in the Legislature that would assist the state’s
active-duty service members and military retirees and their families.
The Task Force also is working to ensure that South Carolina
accomplishes a 10-point blueprint for military support being tracked by
the Defense Department.
The Task Force also is pursuing ongoing discussions with Pentagon,
congressional and other national officials about the importance of
South Carolina’s military installations.
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