Washington DC- Today, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) announced that he has sent a letter promoting the Pittsburgh Air Reserve Station, home of the 911th Airlift Wing, and urging the Air Force to use it as a model for other installations across the country after Acting Secretary Eric Fanning recently visited the Airlift Wing. Casey has consistently promoted the 911th Airlift Wing and has made the case to key Administration officials about the installation’s efficiency and highly skilled workforce.
“The 911th Airlift Wing has made a substantial contribution to the country’s national defense and has led the way in terms of efficiency and workforce development,” Senator Casey said. “I’m confident the Acting Secretary came away from his visit impressed with the work the 911th has done and will do in the future. I’ll continue to press the Administration to ensure the 911th Airlift Wing remains a key part of our national security strategy.”
The full text of Senator Casey’s letter can be seen below:
The Honorable Eric Fanning
United States Air Force
Dear Secretary Fanning:
I would like to thank you for visiting the Pittsburgh Air Reserve Station, home of the 911th Airlift Wing on July 24, 2013. It is my hope that you walked away from the visit with a better understanding of the assets and benefits that Pittsburgh Air Reserve Station provides to the missions that are in the core national security interests of the United States.
As described during the visit, the 911th Airlift Wing has a unique partnership with the Allegheny County Airport Authority which provides substantial savings to the Air Force. The 911th Airlift Wing currently leases 115 acres of land from the Allegheny County Airport Authority. Under the lease, the airport covers fire and medical emergency rescue, 24-hour tower support, snow removal, and access to four runways for only $20,000 per year. In addition, the 911th Airlift Wing has developed an aircraft maintenance program that has resulted in more aircraft availability days while saving the department more than $42 million over the last five years. The 911th Airlift Wing has should be considered a role model to other bases in efficiencies for the Department of Defense.
Along with cost-savings, the Air Reserve Station works jointly with other military efforts in the Pittsburgh area. The 911th will be home of the Pittsburgh Naval Operations Support Center in 2014, and is strategically located across the runway from the 171st Pennsylvania Air National Guard. The McGarity US Army Reserve Center which will be home to a new Commissary and Post Exchange for our military is across the street from the 911th and the 171st. These military assets are strategically located in order to bolster jointness, partnerships, and efficiencies in our region.
Finally, southwestern Pennsylvania has a long tradition of support for our military which has resulted in a vast number of community based initiatives that provide additional benefits to our local military and their families. Strong local and community based partnership not only bring additional cost efficiencies to the Air Force, but bolsters a sense of strong local pride in our military
Thank you again for visiting with the local airmen, and I look forward to a continued dialogue with you on this very important issue