“Air Force Roadmap” under review

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators Pete Domenici and Jeff Bingaman today reviewed the mission impact of a new Air Force “Roadmap” that indicates the types of missions and aircraft that could be deployed at Air Force bases in New Mexico.

The release of the Air Force Roadmap shows future potential impacts at Kirtland, Holloman and Cannon Air Force bases.   The Roadmap is a long-term plan for providing Air Force capabilities needed to meet future threats to U.S. national security, and outlines next-generation weapons systems and potential installations where those systems might be based.

The New Mexico lawmakers noted that the plan outlines potential new New Mexico Air National Guard missions at Kirtland in Albuquerque, while reiterating the intent to assign two F-22 Raptor squadrons at Holloman AFB in Alamogordo.  The plan also sheds further light on aircraft that could be directed to Cannon AFB at Clovis to support that base’s Air Force Special Operations Command (AFSOC) mission.

“This plan is a good and early indication of the Air Force’s intent to utilize New Mexico’s bases in the future.  We are already moving forward with the AFSOC mission at Cannon and we’re funding for the F-22s that will be at Holloman.  I am also optimistic about potential new work at Kirtland,” said Domenici, who serves on the Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee.  “This roadmap can be seen as an affirmation of the assets New Mexico offers the Air Force as it moves to modernize itself.”

“The Air Force’s ‘Roadmap’ bodes very well for New Mexico.  Not only does it confirm new missions for Cannon and Holloman, it also highlights a potential opportunity for Kirtland.  It’s clear to me that the Air Force continues to value our state and it’s important role in our security,” Bingaman said.

The following is a review of the general and potential impacts for New Mexico in the Air Force Roadmap:

Cannon AFB, Clovis

· MQ-1 Predator (Global Vigilance mission)

· MQ-9 Reaper (Global Power mission)

· CV-22 Osprey (Global Power mission)

Kirtland AFB, Albuquerque

· CSAR-X (Combat Search and Rescue Helicopter) (Global Power mission)         

· F-35A Lightning II (Global Power mission)

Holloman AFB, Alamogordo

· F-22 Raptor (Global Power mission)

The beddown locations in New Mexico and elsewhere will now be subject to input from within the Air Force, Air National Guard and Reserves, as well as further fiscal and operational analysis.  Installations that meet preliminary objective requirements will then undergo environmental studies in accordance with the National Environmental Policy Act.