Four separate studies intended to offer specific details about the impact on Maryland of the federal Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process are scheduled to be released between May and July 2006.
The studies, funded by portions of $1.2 million in federal grants awarded to Maryland in 2005, will address issues generated by the influx of up to 60,000 new jobs expected to move to the state as a result of BRAC, according to information presented at a March 13 meeting of the Maryland Military Installation Strategic Planning Council. GBC Vice President Devon Dodson attended the meeting in Crownsville of elected officials, government staffers, civic leaders and planners from Central Maryland
Between 40,000 and 60,000 jobs could be generated in Maryland during the next six years as a result of military base realignment decisions announced by federal officials a year ago, according to J. Michael Hayes, a retired brigadier general who staffs the council.
A significant portion of the jobs are expected to be high technology positions that pay “extremely well,” Hayes wrote in a memo distributed to meeting participants. “Our challenge now is to demonstrate that we can accommodate this growth in a manner that is both efficient and effective over the long term,” he added.
Specifically, the four Maryland impact studies now underway will be conducted by:
- Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), which will identify the specific organizations moving; the number and demographics of military, civilian and related contractor personnel expected to move here; pay ranges and educational requirements; infrastructure costs for on-base and off-base facilities; and the amount of federal support expected from Congress.
- Maryland Department of Planning, which will develop a report detailing the impacts on utilities, transportation, housing, and schools as a result of BRAC at Aberdeen Proving Grounds, Ft. Meade, Bethesda National Naval Hospital, and Andrews Air Force Base.
- Towson University, which will identify BRAC-related education and training requirements relating to the four impacted installations. The analysis will encompass Harford, Cecil, Baltimore, Anne Arundel, Howard, Prince Georges, and Montgomery counties as well as Baltimore City, and will project BRAC-related income tax and property tax revenue in those jurisdictions.
- Towson University will conduct a second study aimed at developing a comprehensive plan to address the government’s growing need for workers with security clearances, in order to enable colleges and universities to provide prescreened graduates with employment with select defense contractors upon graduation. Towson University is coordinating its efforts with workforce investment boards in Montgomery and Anne Arundel counties, the Susquehanna region, and Baltimore City.
More information about BRAC:
Detailed Md. Dept. of Planning overview of BRAC impact for Maryland and issues facing planners
Baltimore Sun, 3-14-06: Planners add Baltimore to BRAC equation
General information about the Maryland Military Installation Strategic Planning Council
Governor’s 5/13/05 press release announcing BRAC recommendations
U.S. Department of Defense – BRAC site