Lawmakers in Washington recently took action to fund the nation's military efforts for the new year. In doing so, the government not only provided funding to ensure the nation's defense policies are in place for 2012, but also helped provide economic stability for Ohio's workforce that either supports or is directly involved with the nation's military interests.
U.S. Sen. Rob Portman (R-Ohio), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, said the Senate's recent passage of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2012 provides security for Americans and solidifies the state of Ohio's continuing role in the nation's military efforts.
While Ohio may not be as well known as some other states for being a home to major military efforts, the Buckeye State has always played a key role in backing the U.S. armed forces on many different levels.
Ohio is home to the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and the Joint Services Manufacturing Center, as well as many other Defense Department facilities and Reserve and National Guard units, Portman noted. Additionally, many Ohio-based companies are key suppliers and research partners for all the military services.
The recent defense bill will make sure work at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base continues at a high level and companies in Ohio that develop cutting-edge technology to support service men and women will continue to do so in 2012.
The U.S. Army had been considering closing production and shutting down the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Lima, Ohio. However, an additional $225 million in funding to the Army for upgrading Abrams Main Battle Tanks will allow a highly-skilled workforce at this center to continue to build and provide soldiers with the safest and most capable tanks in the world.
Portman is also backing efforts for the USEC American Centrifuge Project in Piketon, Ohio, which can provide enriched uranium used for the nation's nuclear arsenal. If the project moves forward, it is expected to create 8,000 jobs nationally, including 4,000 in Ohio.
We salute Ohio's military workforce and recognize the impact these efforts have on the nation's security and the state's economy, as well.