When Governor Mike DeWine’s first proposed budget was released recently, the Air National Guard presence in Mansfield and three other Ohio communities was referenced as a specific budget objective.
According to a press release from the Governor’s office, the budget “…focuses on investing in Ohio’s children families, workforce, infrastructure, mental health and addiction recovery, and natural resources.” When it came to specific recommendations for funding for the Ohio Adjutant General’s Department, those recommendations led to a proposed 6.9% total increase from fiscal year 2019 to fiscal year 2020.
Agency priorities were listed as:
- Maintain the Ohio Air and Army National Guard’s infrastructure in order to meet the training requirements of the force. This includes supporting personnel and facilities operations and maintenance.
- Maintain the highest level of readiness of the Ohio Army and Air National Guard. The key to high readiness is recruiting and retaining sufficient personnel who possess or can develop the skills necessary to provide a ready response capability to meet national defense and state mission requirements.
- Attract and sustain a military force structure within Ohio that is ready, relevant, and responsive to the national command authority and the Governor.
To accomplish this, the budget lists the following as a specific objective: “Maintain the Ohio Air National Guard’s 1.5 million feet of facilities and infrastructure including four air wing bases located at Rickenbacker, Toledo, Mansfield, and Springfield and three geographically separated units located at Port Clinton, Blue Ash, and Zanesville.”
The Governor’s budget is now under consideration by the Ohio General Assembly; the budget is usually passed in June as the new fiscal year begins on July 1.