03/26/09 — Seymour Johnson to get $16 million in stimulus funds

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Seymour Johnson to get $16 million in stimulus funds

By Kenneth Fine
Published in News on March 26, 2009 1:46 PM

Col. Daniel DeBree

Seymour Johnson Air Force Base will benefit from the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act to the tune of nearly $16 million, according to a Department of Defense Expenditure Plan for North Carolina military installations.

And if existing contracts are any indication of where that money might end up, the local economy -- and local contractors -- stand to benefit.

The estimated $15.99 million coming to the Goldsboro base is divided across 15 projects -- from a $350,000 hangar door seal installation to a $3.1 million runway repair.

The majority of the projects involve energy conservation measures -- replacing inefficient lighting systems and repairing HVAC systems.

But most of the money will be spent on infrastructure, or more specifically, the runway.

4th Fighter Wing Vice Commander Col. Daniel DeBree said this morning he expects the money to provide a boost to the local economy.

"We expect these projects to provide a nice jolt to not only Wayne County, but the eastern North Carolina economy as well," he said. "Investment in DoD and Air Force-related projects will further President Obama's goal of providing much-needed stimulus to the economy, while improving the quality of life for our airmen and their families."

And he said the public could rest assured that every dollar allocated under the ARRA would be accounted for and spent responsibly.

"Our wing is fully committed to following Defense Department guidance to ensure an unprecedented level of transparency, efficiency and accountability in use of (these) funds," DeBree said.

In total, the state will receive more than $165 million of the $7.4 billion in defense-related funding provided by the ARRA signed by President Barack Obama Feb. 17. Nearly $70 million of that sum will be spent on new construction, with the remainder falling under facilities sustainment, restoration and modernization.

According to the state plan, Camp Lejeune will receive the biggest allocation -- nearly $44 million for projects -- with Fort Bragg coming in second with about $30 million in funding. The most expensive project on the list calls for a $39.5 million Joint Forces Headquarters to be built in Raleigh.

Those interested in more information about the military spending approved under the ARRA can find them on the Web at www.defenselink.mil/recovery