Eglin F-35 Saga Continue

s: On Feb. 18, less than two weeks after the Air Force issued a record of decision to base 59 F-35s at Eglin AFB, Fla., initially and perhaps more later, after the service conducts a supplemental environmental impact analysis (see below), the Valparaiso city commission voted to proceed with a lawsuit against the Air Force. The Northwest Florida Daily News reported that Valparaiso Mayor Bruce Arnold, one of the commissioners, said there wasn’t any alternative as more than 93 percent of Valparaiso residents would be affected by the higher noise levels of the F-35s. “The city would collapse,” he said. The commission’s vote was 3-0, but two more commissioners who have been opposed to litigation were not present. The lawsuit could delay military construction efforts at Eglin for the beddown. More than $160 million in initial MILCON work was announced last month after the ROD, according to a release from Rep. Jeff Miller (R), in whose district Eglin falls. Miller called that work “a tremendous spark” for the local economy. He told the NFDN that the Valparaiso decision “borders on municipal blackmail.”