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WDAY: The News Leader

Published February 03, 2012, 10:28 PM

Budget cuts could end some missions at Fargo Air Base

Fargo, ND (WDAY TV) - A big blow to the base in Fargo. We are learning a new mission for the North Dakota Air National Guard could be over before it begins. The shocking news comes as Congress takes steps to balance the constrained budget.

By: Travis Skonseng, WDAY

A big blow to the base in Fargo. We are learning a new mission for the North Dakota Air National Guard could be over before it begins. The shocking news comes as Congress takes steps to balance the constrained budget.

Base leaders are still scrambling to tell staff what they know, which isn't much. Not all is bad. The Air Force is unveiling a new intelligence mission at Hector Field, but details aren't known.

It's all part of a plan by the Department of Defense to cut $487 billion over 10 years. That includes manpower. While it isn't yet known if anyone will be out of work in Fargo, cuts to aircraft are imminent. More than 280 aircrafts will likely be eliminated over five years.

The C-27 Cargos, among the aircraft to retire. Fargo is slated to get four C-27's next year for a new mission we first told you about in 2008. Under this plan that wouldn't happen. The C-21 mission ends next year, as well, leaving the predator mission.

Colonel Kent Olson – ND Air National Guard: β€œIt's just one of those things that you know fiscal issues come up and everybody has to you know pay the price so it's all money driven. There's always ways that everybody can do things better and hopefully the DOD can figure that out as well.”

Staff from across the region will be told about the proposal tomorrow. That's when drill weekend begins at base. More information should be known within a month.

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