Communities ride out base closings

Most communities where military bases were closed in the 1980s and 1990s have recovered from the economic blow of losing their Defense facilities, according to the General Accounting Office.

"While some communities surrounding military bases are faring better than others, most are recovering from the initial economic impact of base closures," Barry Holman, GAO's director of defense capabilities and management, told lawmakers in recent testimony (GAO-01-1054T). According to Holman, 62 communities have borne the brunt of Pentagon decisions to close 97 major bases since 1988. Of those communities, he said, 43 (69 percent) had unemployment rates lower than the national average in 2000. Additionally, he said, slightly more than half of those communities saw per capita incomes grow at a higher rate than the national average. Holman said the base closures are "essentially complete," but that the Defense Department had turned over less than half of the more than 500,000 acres of unneeded base land to federal, state or local government agencies or other groups. Cleaning up bases continues to be "costly and challenging" and can delay property transfers, he said. So far, Defense has spent about half of an estimated $7 billion needed to clean up the bases it has closed. Congress is keenly interested in the fate of communities where bases are closed because the Pentagon is asking lawmakers to shutter more bases beginning in 2003. Base-closing opponents have long argued that military closures can devastate local economies, while supporters have claimed that many communities are better off by using the former military land to attract new businesses.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Sponsored by Brocade

    Best of 2016 Federal Forum eBook

    Earlier this summer, Federal and tech industry leaders convened to talk security, machine learning, network modernization, DevOps, and much more at the 2016 Federal Forum. This eBook includes a useful summary highlighting the best content shared at the 2016 Federal Forum to help agencies modernize their network infrastructure.

    Download
  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    GBC Flash Poll Series: Merger & Acquisitions

    Download this GBC Flash Poll to learn more about federal perspectives on the impact of industry consolidation.

    Download
  • Sponsored by One Identity

    One Nation Under Guard: Securing User Identities Across State and Local Government

    In 2016, the government can expect even more sophisticated threats on the horizon, making it all the more imperative that agencies enforce proper identity and access management (IAM) practices. In order to better measure the current state of IAM at the state and local level, Government Business Council (GBC) conducted an in-depth research study of state and local employees.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    The Next Federal Evolution of Cloud

    This GBC report explains the evolution of cloud computing in federal government, and provides an outlook for the future of the cloud in government IT.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    A DevOps Roadmap for the Federal Government

    This GBC Report discusses how DevOps is steadily gaining traction among some of government's leading IT developers and agencies.

    Download
  • Sponsored by LTC Partners, administrators of the Federal Long Term Care Insurance Program

    Approaching the Brink of Federal Retirement

    Approximately 10,000 baby boomers are reaching retirement age per day, and a growing number of federal employees are preparing themselves for the next chapter of their lives. Learn how to tackle the challenges that today's workforce faces in laying the groundwork for a smooth and secure retirement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Hewlett Packard Enterprise

    Cyber Defense 101: Arming the Next Generation of Government Employees

    Read this issue brief to learn about the sector's most potent challenges in the new cyber landscape and how government organizations are building a robust, threat-aware infrastructure

    Download
  • Sponsored by Aquilent

    GBC Issue Brief: Cultivating Digital Services in the Federal Landscape

    Read this GBC issue brief to learn more about the current state of digital services in the government, and how key players are pushing enhancements towards a user-centric approach.

    Download
  • Sponsored by CDW-G

    Joint Enterprise Licensing Agreements

    Read this eBook to learn how defense agencies can achieve savings and efficiencies with an Enterprise Software Agreement.

    Download
  • Sponsored by Cloudera

    Government Forum Content Library

    Get all the essential resources needed for effective technology strategies in the federal landscape.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.