KEY White Sands Missile Range (WSMR) FUNDING AREAS OF CONCERN 2012-2013
Engineering Battalion Barracks ($29M)
The funding request for the Engineering Battalion Barracks has been approved and appropriated, but the funds have not been released. This project is vitally important to the 2nd Engineering Battalion soldiers who are stationed at WSMR.
Zero Net Energy Goal & Renewable Transmission
- WSMR is on a plan to be a Net Zero Base by 2015. Is already taking slides on a powerpoint and making them reality on the ground.
- Land is clearing in readiness of a 4MW solar power generating array to be installed by Siemens. Installation of test wells to investigate the possibility of geothermal generation is moving forward.
- Energy conservation is an important aspect of Zero Net Energy. WSMR working on efficiency projects for existing facilities and a proposal for smart metering on these buildings.
- Public/Private Partnerships are important tools to help achieve Zero Net Energy, but there has to be a better understanding of working between DoD and industry/utility partners. Important to have contracting support that understands that regulatory issues associated with new solar, geothermal or conventional gas generation.
- Monitoring the proposed SunZia Transmission line routing to ensure it is compliant to DoD requests that they have no impact to existing and future mission testing on WSMR controlled land.
Network Integration Evaluation (NIE)/Integrated Capabilities Evaluation (ICE)
- Community working to support Brigade Modernization Command in conducting Integrated Network Experiments in our region on a semi-annual basis.
- WSMR/Ft. Bliss area has proved to be the ideal combination of land mass and air space to stress the equipment and simulate theater environments.
- Region looking to support this important DoD initiative. Developing resources for the contractors coming to the community – is there a way to partner with the Army to ensure that the proper resources are in place to aid in the success of this testing.
- Development of a Joint Urban Test Capability (JUTC) is critical to provide realistic environment that will provide a full spectrum, joint military operation. This site should help provide decision ready information that supports the full system evaluation. An issue that has been identified in theater is that Urban Terrain does affect military technology and that countering these issues will mean success for our soldiers. WSMR has identified a prime location for this JUTC that is compatible with range operations and meets the test objective.
Community/State Collaborative Initiatives
- Southern NM Military Coordination Meetings
Collaborative meeting three times a year between representatives of WSMR, Ft. Bliss and Holloman AFB, the NM Military Base Planning Commission, Bureau of Land Management (BLM), NM State Land Office, City of Las Cruces, Dona Ana County, Spaceport America to discuss issues pertinent to regional land management and improved communication between Federal, State, Local and Military organizations.
- Western Regional Partnership
NM is involved in this five state (NM, AZ, UT, CA, NV) partnership between DoD and other Federal Agencies, State and Local organizations. Local leaders are currently participating on the Energy and Border Committees.
- Alliance for Regional Military Support
Monthly meetings between community leaders of Alamogordo, NM, El Paso, TX & Las Cruces, NM aimed at providing coordinated support of the regional military bases: Holloman Air Force Base, Ft. Bliss, and WSMR.
- Southern New Mexico Joint Land Use Study
The Office of Economic Adjustment is working with the region to develop a joint land use study that could be unique endeavor that would include the three regional bases and the counties that surround and have an impact on those bases. This study is an important inventory of the issues and areas the communities can aid in the future expansion of DoD activities in the region.
The Congressional Range and Test Center Caucus (CRTCC)
- 2011 – Major Range and Test Facility Base (MRTFB) community support groups visiting U.S. Representatives ask why Congress does not hold hearings on health and status of MRTFBs when they are so critical to maintaining U.S. military’s technical and operational superiority – why Congressional interest in Depots, Programs and MWR but not MRTFs?
- 2012 – Arnold AFB Community Council (ACC) broaches MRTF Caucus with Congressional and Senior DoD representatives – favorably supported
- 2013 – On January 22, the Congressional Range and Test Center Caucus is established
- Mission: To educate members of Congress on the strategic value of ranges and test centers and support their operations
- Goals: 1) Support stable budget authority for long-term investment in range and test center infrastructure; 2) Provide regulatory relief for greater flexibility in supporting government and commercial customers
- Chairman: The Honorable Diane Black – 6th Congressional District Tennessee
CRTCC Path Forward
- Recruit membership – Congressman Black will send out formal invitations to other House Representatives shortly
- Launch Caucus and Website – Congressman Black’s staffer, Tucker Brown, will be POC for D.C. related issues (Tucker.Brown@mail.house.gov 202-225-4233)
- Need RCC members to contact their community support groups. Community support groups need to recruit the maximum number of Congressional Representatives to join the Caucus
- Community support groups may contact Arnold Community Council President, Steve Cope (firstname.lastname@example.org 931-212-4093) or ACC Long Range Planning Chairman, Tom Best (email@example.com 931-967-0751) if they have any questions
- Extraordinary Opportunity to capture Congressional support for your test center – similar to what the DoD Depots enjoy
- Critically needed during upcoming sequestration and budget battles
- Energize your community support groups to fully populate Congressional TRC Caucus!