The Air Force intends to come down in size by 10,000 Total Force personnel between Fiscal 2013 and Fiscal 2017, said Chief of Staff Gen. Norton Schwartz Friday. “Importantly,” he said, “those reductions are tied to force structure going away. So we are not reducing personnel in order to meet budget targets.” Schwartz briefed Pentagon reporters the day after the Defense Department leadership outlined the programmatic effects of the nation’s new defense strategy and the $487 billion in budget reductions that DOD must absorb over the next 10 years. Among the topics Schwartz touched upon, he said:
- If Congress goes along with another BRAC round, the Air Force anticipates that “we would actually close bases.” After BRAC 2005, the Air Force “had excess infrastructure in the neighborhood of 20 percent.” After eliminating about 500 aircraft since then, the “presumption is that there is more excess infrastructure.”
- There is no decision yet on the disposition of the Global Hawk Block 30 aircraft that the service seeks to cease operating due to costs deemed too high. “But it would be my expectation that we would place these assets into storage, usable storage, for future possibilities, whatever they might be.” Similarly, the disposition of the C-27Js that the Air Force seeks to divest is not yet clear.