Senator fought for money in state budget to help retain Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station
State Sen. Rob Ortt, R-C-I-North Tonawanda, today announced $3 million he championed to help keep military bases, such as the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station, in the forefront. The funding, included in the 2015-16 state budget, will be used for research and retention efforts of military bases statewide.
In addition to the $3 million secured by Ortt, rollover money from previous state budgets brings the total amount of money available to a little more than $6 million.
"The Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station has been targeted for closure twice: first in 1995 and again in 2005," Ortt said. "There's a good chance, a couple years from now, my colleagues at the local, state and federal level will have to fight hard to keep it off the chopping block again. This money is just one way to ensure the base's future."
Ortt's camp said the air base is an asset to the community and region as a whole. As Niagara County's largest employer, the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station is an economic driver bringing in $200 million annually. Ortt is committed to working with the Niagara Military Affairs Council to make sure a portion of the funding goes toward protecting the air base from closure and strengthening national defense efforts.
NIMAC member Jeff Glatz said, "NIMAC and Niagara County have worked closely together for many years to not only preserve the base, but also grow the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station as a joint-use facility."
The military base retention money will be Senate driven.