WTVM 8/1/14 Editorial: Military cutback concerns

WTVM 8/1/14 Editorial: Military cutback concerns

(WTVM) - With the recent news of the Kellogg's plant closing and the loss of over 300 jobs there, and the potential for new and big cutbacks at Fort Benning, it's easy to think a dark cloud is gathering over our local economy.

But, more always, there is more to the story than just these headlines. There are still plenty of reasons to stay positive.

First, the Kellogg's employees may have other options to stay with the company, and even if those options don't work for many of them, the company's plan to finalize the layoffs in 2015 means those employees now have some time to find a new opportunity.

Meanwhile, the Army is looking at cutting about 11,000 jobs at Fort Benning in a combination of soldier and civilian job losses.

Fort Benning escaped the noose the last time major cutbacks were threatened and there is good reason for optimism this time, too.

The city and the Army have made millions of dollars of investment in infrastructure and base improvements that make the fort an outstanding military asset.

Yes, there will be strategic staffing adjustments, but with the world currently facing multiple security threats in Europe, Africa and the Middle East, it looks increasingly unlikely that our need for battle ready soldiers will disappear to any large degree.

Whenever we hear news of layoffs and cutbacks it's easy to worry. But the Columbus area has seen this movie before.

And local leaders have shown they are very capable of scripting a compelling true story about why Fort Benning is the right place to invest and the wrong place to make major cuts, especially when the world needs more stability in these uncertain times.

General Manager Holly Steuart brings two editorials a week to WTVM. If you would like to respond to an editorial, e-mail your response to WTVM Editorial Committee or write to:

WTVM Editorial Committee
1909 Wynnton Road
Columbus, GA 31906

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