This is a file photo from 2011 of former Defense Secretary Leon Panetta (L) shaking the hand of Gen. William Fraser (C) after Fraser assumed command of United States Transportation Command at Scott Air Force Base. Gen. Paul Selva was appointed head of U.S. Transportation command Monday. Fraser is retiring after 40 years of service.
The Air Force's top civilian official spent Tuesday morning at Scott Air Force Base with Illinois' political leaders.
U.S. Sens. Dick Durbin and Mark Kirk were among the officials who showed Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James around the Metro East military installation. It was the first time James visited the base since being confirmed by the U.S. Senate late last year. Illinois Lt. Gov. Shelia Simon, St. Clair County Board Chairman Mark Kern and Madison County Board Chairman Alan Dunstan were also on hand for James' visit.
Author and columnist Terri Barnes now calls O’Fallon, Ill. home. But that is a recent designation determined by her husband’s transfer to Scott Air Force Base last August. First the daughter and now the wife of a career military man, she estimates O’Fallon is her family's seventeenth hometown.
Scott Air Force Base was not caught off guard by the smaller defense budget proposed earlier this week. On Tuesday, Secretary of Defense Chuck Hegel gave Congress his $496 billion dollar budget, which calls for cutting the military's size, reducing benefits for troops and scaling back spending on military equipment.
For the Air Force, the new budget means an 8 percent reduction in personnel across the board, a move Scott Air Force Base anticipated.
We just kicked off a year-long celebration of St. Louis’ 250th anniversary. As an editor, I had the pleasure of working with Maria Altman on her audio Valentine to the city. If you haven’t heard the piece yet, you should definitely take a listen; it’s very fun and uplifting.
Although sequestration could soon be at an end if President Obama signs the compromise budget into law as expected, the Department of Defense is still facing budget cuts. And another round of Base Realignments and Closings (BRAC) is expected in a few years. That puts Scott Air Force Base in a potentially precarious position.
Civilian workers returned to Scott Air Force Base today after almost a week on furlough because of the government shutdown. Their return was a result of a Department of Defense ruling that civilian workers whose mission contributes to “the morale, well-being, capabilities and readiness of service members” could return to the job with pay.
Colonel Tom Clancy is Chief of the Joint Cyber Center at Scott Air Force Base. He said that during routine sweeps in 2011, more than 44,000 "attempted accesses to systems" at U.S. Transportation Command were discovered. That number quadrupled in 2012.