NewsLocal News

Actions

Department of Defense releases list of hundreds of military projects at risk for cancellation

Posted: 5:51 PM, Mar 20, 2019
Updated: 2019-03-20 21:51:12Z

TOWN OF NIAGARA, N.Y. (WKBW) — The Department of Defense has released a list of hundreds of military construction projects that are at risk cancellation.

The reason? To free up funds and resources to pay for President Trump's border wall.

One of those project could be a $14 million training and fitness center planned for the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Station.

"You could point to that as not being essential, but you're looking at new modern facilities. And part of military preparation is physical fitness, so it's a part of it," said Representative Brian Higgins. "I take them at their word that this is important."

The list comes after the President vetoed Congress's attempt to block his Southern border emergency declaration.

The President said the U.S. is facing an immigration crisis that's putting the safety of Americans at risk.

Higgins said that's not the case.

"The situation at the southern border is not an emergency, it's not a crisis, it's a problem. And the president has more resources from which to manage that problem," he said.

The air base is the largest employer in Niagara County, with some 3,000 full and part-time jobs.

Chairman of the Niagara Military Affairs Council, John Cooper Senior, says base officials will continue to monitor the situation.

But with $14 million in funding now at risk of being on the chopping block, Higgins said the Air Reserve Station would need to prove why it needs the fitness center.

"They certainly have to justify that - and will have to before Congress - justify the importance of that appropriation for that specific purpose," he said.