Washington, D.C. – Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) hosted a meeting today between Spokane leaders and General Philip M. Breedlove, Vice Chief of Staff of the U.S. Air Force, to discuss efforts to bolster Fairchild Air Force Base, the largest employer in Eastern Washington, including making sure that Fairchild is the first home of the new KC-46A tanker.
“I was delighted to bring Spokane’s leaders face-to-face with General Breedlove so we could have a candid, in-depth discussion on one the most important issues facing our community,” said Rep. McMorris Rodgers. “I appreciate General Breedlove for taking the time to meet with us and we look forward to continuing to work with him on this critical issue that affects us all.”
The key topic at today’s meeting was replacing the aging KC-135’s at Fairfield Air Force Base with the new KC-46A tanker currently being built by Boeing. The Air Force is current developing basing criteria for the KC-46A, which should be available later this spring.
“Whether you’re considering the age of Fairchild’s current tankers or the base’s proximity to Asia, or whether you’re considering the high quality of Fairchild’s leadership or the courage of its service members and their families, no base in the entire country is better qualified to serve as the first home of the new tankers than Fairchild,” said Rep. McMorris Rodgers.
Leaders at today’s meeting included Spokane Mayor David Condon, Spokane County Commissioner Todd Mielke, Greater Spokane Incorporated President and CEO Rich Hadley, and Forward Fairchild Chairman Greg Bever, among others.
Rep. McMorris Rodgers is also organizing a meeting between Spokane leaders and Ms. Kathleen Ferguson, Assistant Secretary of the Air Force, Installations, that will take place at the Pentagon tomorrow.
This is the eighth straight year Rep. McMorris Rodgers has led a meeting between Spokane leaders and high-ranking Pentagon officials in Washington, D.C.