Protecting Wright-Patterson Air Force Base (WPAFB) and ensuring it is strategically positioned for future growth and investment is a responsibility all of us own in the business community, as well as local, state and federal governments.
In recent weeks, the Ohio legislature made a commitment to WPAFB by ensuring that Montgomery and Greene counties remained together in Ohio Congressional District #10, in the new redistricted map. The preservation and advancement of Ohio’s largest single site employer, WPAFB, helps our region support over 32,000 employees and a $16.5 billion annual economic impact on our community. The strategic alignment of these two counties in this Congressional district is vitally important to our economy and the future of Ohio.
Our region’s success strategy for Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is contingent on Ohio having the right advocates in place to deliver real economic investments to WPAFB that result in economic growth for Ohio. The recent redistricting process in Ohio is an example of how important and critical this process is to the Dayton region and it showcased a strong commitment from our state leaders to preserving Ohio’s #1 federal asset.
Ohio is well positioned with U.S. Congressman Mike Turner as a senior ranking member of the U.S. House Armed Services Committee. This position, combined with a statewide commitment from Ohio’s Congressional delegation, state government leaders and local advocates gives the Dayton region and Ohio a competitive advantage in supporting our largest economic engine and ensuring federal defense investments for Ohio are at the forefront of ongoing and new department of defense opportunities. Department of Defense investments, Base Realignment and Closure Act efforts and federal defense legislation is extremely competitive and other states and their representatives are “eyeing” what we have. We MUST have a seat at this table and we MUST be aligned as private and public leaders to preserve and grow our federal investments.
The Dayton area business community, the Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce’s Board of Trustees, and I want to thank the state legislature and Governor Mike DeWine for the most recent map that keeps Montgomery and Greene counties aligned together in Congressional District 10, allowing us to protect and grow Ohio’s most valuable economic asset.
In four years, a new Congressional district map will be considered by the state legislature. We don’t have a long runway until that time, and all of us need to continue our commitment and dedication to protecting WPAFB in the redistricting process showcasing how important this federal installation is to the success of our community and Ohio. We are all in this together.
Chris Kershner, CAE
President & CEO
Dayton Area Chamber of Commerce
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