Threat to Close Moon's 911th Renews, Town Hall Meeting Planned
Officials will discuss the future of the air base with reservists and Moon-area community members.
After dodging a planned 2012 closure, Moon Township's 911th Airlift Wing is again in jeopardy.
The Air Force is pursuing an effort to shut down the base in March 2013—right after a temporary law to prevent such a closure expires, according to a statement from Rep. Tim Murphy, R-Upper St. Clair .
Murphy will host a town hall meeting at 7 p.m. Monday at the Moon Municipal Building. The meeting is open to the public.
The Congressman will discuss the future of the air reserve base and take questions.
The proposed 2012 closure was a part of a plan to trim $8.7 billion from the Air Force's 2013 budget.
The closure would have included the elimination of the base's 1,100 military and 300 civilian positions. The 911th was first targeted for closure because of its aging C-130 tactical aircraft, which are among the oldest still flying in the military.
Multiple bases around the country were set to undergo realignments under the plan, but the 911th was the only one set to close. Air Force officials said shuttering the wing would save the military $300 million annually.
U.S. Defense Secretary Leon Panetta issued a directive in July to keep the base open for at least one more year.
Congress also passed legislation that froze the closure of all military bases until 2013.
The Senate will take up draft legislation next week that will prohibit the base from closing through Sept. 2013, according to Murphy's office.
State Rep. Mark Mustio, R-Moon, and Allegheny County councilmembers Heather Heidelbaugh, Michael Finnerty and Vice Gastgeb will also be on hand during Monday's meeting.
Check back with Patch for coverage.
Interested in following efforts to save the 911th from closure? Visit the Military Affairs Coalition of Western Pennsylvania's Facebook page.