Assemblyman Fred W. Thiele, Jr. (I, D, WF-Sag Harbor) today announced that the 2013 State Budget contains a $2 million appropriation to help local municipalities and community organizations support and strengthen New York’s military installations in the face of looming defense cuts in Congress.
The Military Base Retention appropriation will help to safeguard New York’s National Guard capabilities in the wake of Hurricane Sandy and to protect the economic and employment opportunities that major military facilities provide across the State. Service members from each of New York's air bases were deployed during Hurricane Sandy.
The Gabreski ANGB, home to the 106th Air Rescue Wing, is among the military installations which benefits from this program. In 2012, Suffolk County Department of Economic Development received $126,686 to support the mission of the 106th, and to expand the units’ interoperability with emergency responders in local and national disasters.
Thiele stated, "New York's military installations are a major driver of local economies, and we will fight to keep these bases strong and secure, right here in our State. Throughout Hurricane Sandy and in the storm's aftermath, we saw time and time again our military personnel on the front line, helping residents, keeping our streets safe, and providing critical supplies to those in need. This appropriation will help to preserve these important military installations as well as the thousands of jobs and the nearly $2 billion in economic impact supported by the bases."
New York State’s military installations continue to be threatened by federal budgetary constraints. The appropriation will help promote, enhance and protect New York’s bases. State military bases account for more than 10,000 direct jobs with direct wages of $688 million and $1.9 billion of economic impact.
Thiele added, "The 106th Rescue Wing has an important role in the defense of our nation and is an equally important community resource as evidenced in the aftermath of Superstorm Sandy. Long Island and all of New York State benefit from the dedication and bravery of the men and women of the 106th Rescue Wing who perform its search and rescue missions. State funding will help ensure the 106th and its highly trained crews will remain here in Suffolk County. We need to insure that New York residents continue to benefit from their security and rescue capabilities."