Sunday, January 07, 2007

Intriguing story on BRAC hires in today's Baltimore Sun

We've all heard that plenty of workers at the Fort Monmouth, N.J. military base don't want to come to Maryland when it's time to make the big BRAC move. But a story in today's Baltimore Sun reports those jobs won't go away. Instead, the Army is busy in Fort Monmouth hiring workers who will move to Aberdeen Proving Ground when the time comes. According to the story:

"A recent military survey estimating that only a small fraction of the workers at Fort Monmouth plan to follow their jobs to Aberdeen has sparked a hiring spree by the Army aimed at putting about 2,600 workers in place at the New Jersey base long before it moves to Maryland.

Those employees would 'backfill' projected losses, military officials said. The new hires - including many Marylanders - sign on with the understanding that they will start in New Jersey and move to Maryland with the base's operations.

'We are aggressively hiring from the Maryland area now,' said Sue Nappi, assistant deputy chief of staff for operations and plans at Fort Monmouth."

The story says that Aberdeen is expecting an increase of 8,200 workers at its base, with double that number to come in the form of contracting and other jobs that support the base. But they're still crunching the numbers:

"Harford is planning to award a contract for further study of the realignment's impact within the next few months and will incorporate the Army's survey into those statistics, said James C. Richardson, the county's economic development director."

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