State officials oppose National Guard budget cuts

State government leaders this week asked President Obama and members of Congress to reject federal funding cuts for the National Guard.

In a letter from the National Lieutenant Governors Association -- co-signed by 25 lieutenant governors, senate presidents and secretaries of state -- second-in-command state officials expressed uniform opposition to potential cuts to the Army National Guard in the fiscal 2016 U.S. Army budget proposal.

"As a unique state-based military force, the National Guard is the only military force that is shared by the states and the federal government," the letter stated. " It is a ready, reliable, and essential force that responds to national disasters and emergencies, and is critical to peace and security at home and abroad.  ... However, the Army has proposed to eliminate more than 8,000 Army National Guard positions, including 1,700 full-time positions necessary to maintain the Guard’s readiness and transfer its Apache helicopters to the active component."

"These National Guard budgets would cut Army National Guard forces to a pre-2001 level," the letter continued. "A return to these levels is contrary to the interest of the states and nation and we encourage transparent discussion of active duty and National Guard force structure pre- and post-9/11."

Reader comments

Fri, Apr 17, 2015

I would be interested in knowing whether some of those 1,700 full time positions would involve the civilians working for the National Guard, because if it does, I'm sure my fellow co-workers would like to know sooner than later, so that anyone at the retirement age may be able to retire instead of being let go. As I mentioned to a former soldier who I worked alongside of two years ago, he called me a "dinosaur" and I commented that I may be one but he is on the list to be extinct as the drones and robots are coming in, and less people are needed in the armed forces then ever before. The only reason some may be kept on down the road would be if another war broke out. When it finally sunk in, he was not a happy camper.

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