Missouri elected officials from all levels of government will be at a public listening session today to speak against the proposed cutting of 5,400 jobs at Fort Leonard Wood in response to projected budget cuts in Washington D.C.
Steve Erhardt with Friends of the Fort and the Association of the United States Army, says the loss of those jobs would be devastating.
“If these cuts did go through, which hopefully they won’t, but an estimated population decrease of almost 14,000 people within our region,” Erhardt told Missourinet affiliate KJPW. “Certainly we need to do everything we can to send a message to the army that … not here.”
Erhardt says the message to the military is proactive.
“We want to build a case of why Fort Leonard Wood is a great place for the army to do business, so as downsizing happens potentially at other installations, we think we’ve got a great story to tell as to why they should come to Fort Leonard Wood.”
Missouri’s governor, both U.S. Senators, several statewide elected officials, and state lawmakers are among those expected to participate at tonight’s listening session. As many as 1,500 Missourians are also anticipated.
The session begins at 5:30 at Nutter Field House at the Fort.