2019 Senate Joint Resolution 69
Relating to: recognizing the contributions of the 115th Fighter Wing and showing support for basing F-35As at Truax Field Air National Guard Base in Wisconsin.
Whereas, after reviewing 18 potential locations, the U.S. Air Force selected Truax Field Air National Guard Base in Wisconsin as the preferred location for one of the next two Air National Guard F-35A bases; and
Whereas, F-35As will allow the Air Force to maintain its air dominance capabilities and allow Service Members to conduct their missions with greater safety, which benefits our country as a whole; and
Whereas, the U.S. Air Force expects the state-of-the-art F-35As would begin arriving at Truax Field by early 2023; and
Whereas, F-35As will replace the Block 30 F-16s flown by the 115th Fighter Wing, which are the oldest model F-16s in the Air Force, and this will ensure the long-term viability of Truax Field; and
Whereas, for 71 years there has been an uninterrupted Air Force mission at Truax Field, and the F-35As will be the tenth different air frame flown from Truax Field; and
Whereas, the F-35 mission would maintain and enhance the economic impact of the 115th Fighter Wing by continuing its $100 million of economic output and 1,650 in-state jobs and creating 64 new jobs; and
Whereas, the F-35 mission would provide up to $120 million in improvements to the Dane County Regional Airport and create hundreds of construction jobs with a total economic impact to the region of more than $3.3 billion; and
Whereas, the 115th Fighter Wing, the 128th Air Refueling Wing in Milwaukee, and the Volk Field Combat Readiness Training Center (CRTC) are intricately linked and benefit from their close proximity to each other, which would further increase the F-35 mission's economic impact on the state of Wisconsin; and
Whereas, the Draft Environmental Impact Statement (EIS) for the F-35 basing projects environmental impacts, but noise modeling in the Draft EIS identifies the potential for noise impacts in the area immediately surrounding the airport that would require mitigation if the modelling is found to be accurate; and
Whereas, the 115th Fighter Wing has a long history of being a good neighbor to Dane County Regional Airport, has worked cooperatively with the airport in the past to mitigate noise impacts by adjusting flight patterns and flight times and making significant infrastructure investments, and has indicated that the F-35 provides further opportunities to mitigate noise impacts, including almost completely eliminating afterburner use at the airport; and
Whereas, the state of Wisconsin should fully participate with Dane County Regional Airport as a partner in the Federal Aviation Administration Part 150 program to mitigate or abate noise concerns; and
Whereas, the final decision on locating the F-35 base will be made early in 2020; and
Whereas, there is widespread bipartisan support for basing the F-35s at Truax Field from federal, state, and community leaders who recognize and appreciate the importance of the 115th Fighter Wing's dual federal and state missions; and
Whereas, the 115th Fighter Wing has deployed overseas to defend and protect our nation; mobilized in response to statewide emergencies and natural disasters; and responded locally to incidents at the airport and in the surrounding community, including the recent fire at the Blount Street electrical substation in Madison; now, therefore, be it
Resolved by the senate, the assembly concurring, That the Wisconsin Legislature does hereby recognize the many federal, state, and local contributions of the 115th Fighter Wing and fully supports basing the next generation of freedom fighting aircraft in the state of Wisconsin.