“We’re all hoping to maneuver ahead with a remaining determination as rapidly as we will,“ mentioned Air Power Secretary Frank Kendall
WASHINGTON – Throughout a listening to Could 13 of the Home Appropriations Committee’s protection subcommittee, Rep. Robert Aderholt (R-Ala.) requested Air Power Secretary Frank Kendall to put out the following steps within the doable relocation of U.S. House Command.
“Assuming that the GAO doesn’t suggest overturning the unique basing determination” to maneuver House Command from Peterson House Power Base in Colorado to Redstone Arsenal in Alabama, Aderholt requested, how lengthy will it take to get this accomplished?
“We’re all hoping to maneuver ahead with a remaining determination as rapidly as we will,” Kendall informed Aderholt.
The Authorities Accountability Workplace has accomplished one in every of two unbiased investigations of how the Air Power decided its most well-liked location for U.S. House Command.
Alleging that the choice was improperly influenced by the previous Trump administration, Colorado lawmakers requested GAO and the Protection Division’s inspector normal to overview the method that led the Air Power in January 2021 to suggest Redstone Arsenal, in Huntsville, Alabama.
The IG mentioned in a report final week that investigators discovered no proof of undue affect. Lots of the particulars of how six candidate bases had been scored, and feedback made by senior U.S. navy officers had been redacted from the IG report.
The GAO report is also being closely redacted. The Protection Division designated it CUI, brief for controlled however unclassified data.
“We’re working as rapidly as we will to develop a public model of our report; I anticipate that will likely be coming within the subsequent few weeks,” a GAO spokesperson informed SpaceNews. GAO has shared its report with members of Congress and staffs who requested it and “who demonstrated a have to know,” the GAO spokesperson mentioned.
One of many lawmakers who was briefed on the GAO report, Sen. Tommy Tuberville (R-Ala.), mentioned GAO “confirmed that in the course of the U.S. Air Power’s complete course of, Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, Alabama was the best scoring location within the analysis part, the best ranked location within the choice part, and the situation with probably the most benefits within the remaining determination matrix.”
He additionally mentioned the GAO was “essential of eleventh hour makes an attempt to raise a a lot decrease ranked set up into the quantity two place. That synthetic motion gave the looks of bias.”
Kendall mentioned on the HAC-D listening to that his workplace has not but reviewed all the ultimate experiences. Below the usual basing course of, the following step can be to conduct an environmental overview “in addition to taking a look at another issues earlier than we finalize the choice,” he mentioned.
The 1970 Nationwide Environmental Coverage Act (NEPA) requires federal businesses to evaluate the environmental results of their proposed actions prior to creating choices
Usually, that course of would take about 4 months whole, Kendall mentioned. Three months can be wanted to finish the evaluation and a month to permit public feedback. “I’m very hopeful that by hook or by crook, we get a remaining determination throughout the subsequent a number of months,” he mentioned.
If Redstone Arsenal passes the environmental overview and no main points emerge, it might nonetheless take a number of years to face up the brand new headquarters.
Kendall famous a brand new constructing must be constructed that meets the necessities of a navy command headquarters.