Governor, legislators giving it a try

Published: Wednesday, April 23, 2014 at 06:36 PM.

And, I’m not even going to get into the base bowling alley or commissary situations.

McCrory granted us a one-on-one interview from Washington. He sounded an optimistic tone about Cherry Point and the Fleet Readiness Center East aircraft repair facility.

“We’re feeling pretty confident about the future of Cherry Point from all indications that we’re getting from the Pentagon,” McCrory said.

Sanderson said the Havelock community and supporters of Cherry Point were in a better position than others to fight for assets at the Marine Corps air station. Still, he added, “You never can say that a base is safe, because we’ve seen too many that thought they were safe and the next day they turned up on the chopping block.”

They realize how important Cherry Point is to the economy. The 2012 economic impact statement from the base — the latest available — showed that Cherry Point provided $2.2 billion to the region’s economy. Yet behind those numbers was a disturbing number. Total employment on the base dropped by nearly 300.

McCrory, Sanderson and Graham pointed out that efforts must be made to provide good civilian jobs to those who will be losing their current military ones.

In our discussions, I believe they have the best interests of Cherry Point and the surrounding communities at heart. It makes political sense, no doubt, but it is also what they were elected to do. I believe there are too many factors involved to know whether their efforts will net results, but at least they are giving it a try.

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