Public input needed in process of bringing F-35 fighter jets to 187th Fighter Wing

Public meeting about deployment of F-35

MONTGOMERY, Ala. (WSFA) - The National Guard needs more of your input about bringing the F-35 to Montgomery. It’s holding a meeting tonight for you to learn more about the impact the F-35 will have on the area around Dannelly Field, and for you to express your concerns.

The F-35 is a highly sophisticated fighter jet, far more capable than the F-16s that are currently at Dannelly Field. It has big implications for this area: not only will it keep about 1400 jobs at the 187th Fighter Wing, but there’s a chance of another 200 or so jobs with the additional planes. That’s not to mention the roughly $100 million the pentagon has set aside for construction of a new hangar, and the jobs that will come with that.

Public meeting to be held on F-35

The meeting is a follow-up to a similar meeting that was held about a year and a half ago. That first meeting was about hearing concerns as the National Guard put together what’s called an Environmental Impact Statement, that’s required by the EPA to look at the consequences of putting the F-35 fighter jet squadron at Dannelly Field.

Thursday will be a chance for the public to review a draft of that statement and then add comments or concerns. The information gathered will go directly to the Air Force to consider as it goes through its decision-making process.

If you cannot attend the meeting, but would still like to make a comment, you can do so here.

The meeting starts with an open house at 5 p.m. A formal presentation will start at 6:30 p.m. at the Montgomery Regional Airport’s conference room.

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