Full committee hearing to be held on recommendation to close JFCOM

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Sen. Carl Levin, chairman of the Senate Committee on Armed Services, has agreed to Sen. Jim Webb’s request for a full committee hearing to close the U. S. Joint Forces Command in Norfolk.  Levin sent Webb a letter Monday saying he would work to schedule a hearing in September after the Senate reconvenes.

The command employs about 6,000 people in the Hampton Roads area.

Secretary of Defense Robert Gates proposed eliminating the command earlier this month as part of an initiative to reduce overhead and inefficiencies in the DoD budget. The secretary wants to cut $100 billion over the next five years. While Levin said he shares Gate’s objectives of reducing “excess in the defense enterprise,” he agrees with Webb (D-Va.) that “the far-reaching initiative announced by the secretary deserves close scrutiny from our committee.”

Business and political leaders oppose the closing, saying it would deal a devastating blow to Hampton Roads’ economy. 

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