Niagara Falls, NY (WBEN) Secretary of Defense Leon Panetta is telling reservists at the Niagara Falls Air Reserve Base he and the Defense Department are committed to the future of the base. He adds the department is committed to looking for future missions for the base.
Panetta's visit comes at the invitation of Congresswoman Kathy Hochul, who was concerned about the potential loss of 845 jobs at the base. She says a new mission focusing on surveillance or border security should be considered.
That was the message 107th Wing Commander Jim McCready was looking for. "To have him come here in person and deliver his message, essentially the state of the defense budget and how that applies to Niagara Falls, meant the world to us," says McCready.
Senator Charles Schumer echoed those sentiments. "It couldn't have gone better," remarked Schumer, who was joined by Congressman Brian Higgins and Congresswoman Kathy Hochul.