State of Illinois
91st General Assembly

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 1                       HOUSE JOINT RESOLUTION

 2        WHEREAS, During  recent  budget  negotiations,  President
 3    Clinton  called  for  two  additional  rounds of defense base
 4    realignment and closure (BRAC) in Fiscal Years 2001 and 2005;
 5    Illinois has four military bases in danger of  being  closed;
 6    the  shutdown  of any of these four military bases would have
 7    extremely adverse economic and social effects upon the  local
 8    communities  around the bases and to the State of Illinois as
 9    a whole; and

10        WHEREAS, Scott Air  Force  Base,  located  in  St.  Clair
11    County  in  Southwestern  Illinois,  is  the  seventh largest
12    employer in the bi-state St. Louis metropolitan area and  one
13    of the largest employers in downstate Illinois; nearly 40,000
14    individuals  are  connected  with  Scott  Air  Force Base, as
15    either military or civilian personnel, their dependents,  and
16    retirees;  the  loss  of these individuals and their families
17    and  retirees  would  have  an  adverse   impact   upon   the
18    communities  in  Southwestern  Illinois;  a  recent Air Force
19    analysis has estimated the annual impact of Scott  Air  Force
20    Base  is over $1 billion; the closure of this base would have
21    a devastating economic impact upon the region and  the  State
22    of Illinois as a whole; and

23        WHEREAS, The Charles Melvin Price Support Center, located
24    in Madison County, is in the process of being declared excess
25    property  and  State support is needed to keep this base from
26    closing; if efforts to keep this base open are  unsuccessful,
27    State  support  is  needed  for  successful  redevelopment to
28    assist the local community with environmental remediation  of
29    the site and infrastructure improvements to the site in order
30    to improve the economic situation in this area; and

31        WHEREAS, The Rock Island Arsenal, located in Rock Island,
32    Illinois,  is  the  second  largest employer in the Quad City
                            -2-               LRB9106543CBcbB
 1    region; the base was  originally  built  in  1816  and  is  a
 2    National  Historic  Landmark; 28,110 individuals are directly
 3    affected by the Rock  Island  Arsenal,  including  personnel,
 4    their  families, and retirees; the Department of Commerce and
 5    Community Affairs estimates that the annual  economic  impact
 6    of  this  base  to be $548 million to the Quad Cities and the
 7    State of Illinois; the closure of  the  Rock  Island  Arsenal
 8    would  have  a  dramatically  negative  effect  upon the Quad
 9    Cities area and the State of Illinois; and

10        WHEREAS, The Great Lakes Naval Training  Center,  located
11    North  of  Chicago,  is  an  important  economic  and  social
12    influence  on the surrounding communities; 28,500 individuals
13    are tied to the base, as either  military  personnel,  family
14    members,  or  civilian  employees;  the  Training Center also
15    includes  the  139  bed  Great  Lakes  Naval  Hospital;   the
16    termination  of  the  Great Lakes Naval Training Center would
17    have an adverse effect upon the  surrounding  community,  the
18    City of Chicago, and the State of Illinois; and

19        WHEREAS,  Other  states have made a significant effort to
20    protect and retain the military  bases  in  their  respective
21    states;  last  year  Mississippi  spent nearly $50 million to
22    take steps to protect its military bases; New York will spend
23    nearly $2.5 million to protect its Air Force  Base  in  Rome,
24    N.Y.;  states in the Southwestern region of the United States
25    have banded together in a joint effort to protect and  retain
26    their bases; and

27        WHEREAS,  Governor George Ryan and members of the General
28    Assembly representing the areas  most  directly  affected  by
29    potential  base  closures are taking a leading role to enlist
30    State assistance to help local communities, as  other  states
31    have done; all four military bases are vital economically and
32    important  to the community life in the surrounding areas, as
33    well  as,  a  benefit  to  the  entire  State  of   Illinois;
                            -3-               LRB9106543CBcbB
 1    therefore, be it

 4    SENATE  CONCURRING  HEREIN, that we urge the General Assembly
 5    and the Governor to make the effort of saving the bases a top
 6    priority by having the Department of Commerce  and  Community
 7    Affairs be the lead agency to coordinate and assist local and
 8    State  efforts  to save Illinois' military bases; we urge the
 9    State to provide  financial  assistance  to  State  agencies,
10    local  government,  and  other  local  entities,  subject  to
11    appropriations,  to help the effort to save the bases; and be
12    it further

13        RESOLVED, That suitable  copies  of  this  resolution  be
14    delivered  to the Governor, the Speaker of the Illinois House
15    of Representatives, and the President of the Illinois Senate.

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