Valley considered for missile defense site - 21 News Now, More Local News for Youngstown, Ohio -

Valley considered for missile defense site

WASHINGTON, D.C. - Congressman Tim Ryan (D - 13th Dist. Ohio) has announced that Camp Ravenna Joint Military Training Center is being considered as a location for part of the nation's missile defense system.

According to a news release from Ryan's office,  the Department of Defense and the Missile Defense Agency is looking at five possible sites for an interceptor deployment site, a ground-based system designed to intercept ballistic missiles.

Ryan says that the Missile Defense Agency will gather additional information about the site, including an on-site visit, before deciding which sites will advance to the next round of consideration.

The 2013 National Defense Authorization Act requires a site study and Environmental Impact Statement.

Sites that are selected for further consideration will undergo environmental studies which will take an additional 18-24 months.

"This would be a great opportunity for Camp Ravenna and the State of Ohio to benefit from Department of Defense investments, leading to increased employment in both the construction phase and sustaining operational employment," said Congressman Ryan.

U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-Ohio) said "With the threat from North Korea, and the increasing threat from Iran, improving our missile defense is critical. Ohio is in a strategic geographic position for these missile defense capabilities and it's great to see the Defense Department recognize the role Ravenna could fill. In addition to the important national security mission, such a site would bring economic development and jobs to the region. I plan to stay in close contact with the Defense Department as they move forward with their assessment. "

Other sites being considered include Camp Ethan Allen Training site in Vermont, NAS Portsmouth SERE Training Area in Maine, Fort Custer CTC in Michigan, and Fort Drum, New York.

U.S. Senator Sherrod Brown (D-Ohio) said "I'm encouraged that the Department of Defense continues to look to Ravenna for future national security missions. Should we get to a point where the Department decides an additional missile defense site in the United States is needed and viable, I'm confident that Camp Ravenna will prove to be a valuable asset."

The Camp Ravenna Joint Military Training Center covers 21,683 acres located 30 miles west of Youngstown, along the Trumbull Portage County line.

Formerly known as the Ravenna Army Ammunition Plant, the original mission of the facility was to produce munitions and later to demilitarize them. Those missions ended in 1992.

The facility is currently being used by the Ohio Army National Guard as a military training facility.

For more information on the Missile Defense Agency click here.

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