The Air Force is downsizing a base in western Massachusetts. The Westover Air Force Reserve Base in Chicopee is going to lose both aircraft and jobs.
The Air Force is going to transfer half of the fleet of 16 C-5 cargo planes now assigned to Westover to a base in Texas and eliminate 334 jobs. The changes are the result of deep budget cuts at the Pentagon. Brig. Gen. Steven Vautrain, the commander of the 439th airlift wing at Westover, said people on the base were saddened, but not terribly surprised by Monday’s announcement.
On the seventh day of the federal government shutdown, thousands of civilian employees returned to work Monday at a half dozen military bases in Massachusetts.
The 270 civilian employees at Westover Air Reserve base in Chicopee went to work Monday as a result of a decision by the Secretary of Defense. Lt. Col. James Bishop, the chief public affairs officer at the base, said the civilians were notified over the weekend to come back to work.
Furloughs of civilian workers for the U.S. Department of Defense begin today. The mandatory days off without pay were ordered by the Secretary of Defense as a result of the across the board federal budget cuts known as sequestration. About 700 employees at the Westover Air Force Reserve Base in Chicopee, Massachusetts are affected. WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill spoke with the public affairs officer for the 439th Airlift Wing Air Force Master Sergeant Andrew Biscoe.
A retired Air Force Brigadier General, Donald Quenneville is going to be managing the efforts in Massachusetts to protect the state’s defense sector from federal budget cuts. Quenneville, who is a native of South Hadley, has been hired as executive director of the Military Asset and Security Strategy Task Force. He spoke with WAMC’s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief, Paul Tuthill.
A new report details the huge impact existing military bases have on the economy in Massachusetts. The report was prepared as part of an effort to save the state’s six military installations from federal cuts. WAMC”s Pioneer Valley Bureau Chief Paul Tuthill reports