WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Senator Roy Blunt (Mo.) – who serves as a member of the U.S. Senate Committee on Armed Services and the U.S. Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense – met today with U.S. Army Assistant Secretary for Installations, Energy and Environment Katherine Hammack to discuss the Senator's serious concerns about the impact of personnel cuts on the Fort Leonard Wood, Mo. community and the local economy.
During the meeting, Blunt was updated on the Army's plan to reduce its total end-strength numbers by at least 80,000 soldiers in 2020, which could cause a harmful ripple effect at Army installations and communities across the country, including Fort Leonard Wood.
"Fort Leonard Wood is home to roughly 10,000 soldiers, not including additional trainees, students, family members, and other military-related personnel," said Blunt. "This joint, inter-agency training base is vital to the community, to the local economy, and to America's military readiness and preparedness."
"Secretary Hammack and I had a very constructive discussion about the budgetary challenges facing our national defense, and I will continue fighting to protect the Fort Leonard Wood community from the impact of these spending cuts, while ensuring they do not compromise our national security," Blunt continued.
Blunt serves as a member of the Armed Services Subcommittee for Personnel. He also serves on the Armed Services Subcommittee for Readiness and Management Support, which is responsible for authorizing additional military base closures.
While Blunt supports the Army's efforts to rebalance its force structure to meet today's worldwide threats, he emphasized that the Army would be well-served to consider Fort Leonard Wood for additional missions as the Army considers how best to "right-size" the force.