LETTER TO THE EDITOR
Much has been written and discussed about the Department of Defense's Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process over the years. After all, we live in a community that is heavily dependent on military dollars and we have been through 3 rounds of BRAC so far. It is interesting, having lived and been involved in all BRACs and aspects of the BRAC processes, what happens inside the process and what is exposed outside.
The Southern Maryland Navy Alliance (SMNA) takes a bi-partisan approach to these issues, regardless of which Party controls Washington, DC or Annapolis. It is our intent that growth for the Patuxent River Naval Air Station and St. Inigoes should be politically neutral and economically advantageous.
In order for the success to be a win - win we realize that not all decisions are made locally and having witnessed bases close over the years we know that politics do play a role and millions of dollars are spent to preserve jobs and economies. The list is long.
Like in sports, teams need a coach, captain, call it what you wish. They pick their team and work tactically and strategically to win. For Southern Maryland, the Coach is Congressman Hoyer. For all of the BRACs, the SMNA has worked alongside Mr. Hoyer and his staff, with State and local lawmakers. We have enjoyed overriding success. We will not go into details but we can confidently say that in at least two of the BRACs things were not boding well for the local team. Mr. Hoyer worked with us to coordinate message and presentations, helped to direct meetings and allowed us to show why Pax River is the product of strategic BRAC thinking and why we are where we are today. On top of that, the expansion of laboratories, facilities and programs have directly benefited from his leadership.
We realize in a politically charged environment spin is a necessary evil. Yet, we have tremendous doubts when we hear of professors who are on the outside looking in, who know after the fact how results were derived. If one wishes to address issues outside of DOD and the base, we say feel free.
We are proud of our working relationship with Congressman Hoyer on military issues as they affect Southern Maryland and honestly, we have never heard him say he has been our savior. But remember Congressman Hoyer is the teams Coach and Coach's do get to boast about winning.
Todd B. Morgan, President
R. Keith Fairfax, Sr. Vice President
Southern Maryland Navy Alliance
PO Box 986.
Lexington Park, MD 20653
Editor's Note: This letter is in response to Hoyer's Big BRAC Lie, Commentary by Ron Miller, Aug. 5, 2009