WCD threatens Indian Head base
This letter was sent to the Charles County Board of Commissioners. A copy was also sent to the Maryland Independent.
I am submitting additional information in support of Mr. John Brough’s letter to the editor stating “Watershed district says county is not open for business” (Maryland Indepen- dent, Feb. 10).
Not only does it say the county is not open for business, but it is also saying should the proposed Watershed Conservation District (WCD) downzoning be implemented, we are in danger of closing one of our major employ- ers: the Naval Base at Indian Head.
I have been a resident of and employed in Charles County since 1962. I have lived in Indian Head, Bryans Road and La Plata the entire time. I have spent 33 years as a government employee at the Naval Ordnance Station and the Naval Ordnance Center at Indian Head and an additional 17 years as a support services contract manager providing support services to the base. I retired in 2012 after nearly 50 years of service.
In 1994 and 1995, I was a facility manager specialist working for the Naval Ordnance Center. I was part of a team of government analysts sent to all the naval weapons stations located along the East and West Coast to determine their “military worth” for consideration during the upcoming Base Realignment and Closing (BRAC) Analysis. This information would be utilized to determine what cost savings could be realized by closing any one of them and relocating/combining the work done there elsewhere.
One of the primary evaluation criteria factors was “Ability of the ‘local community’ to support the base.” “Local community” was defined as an area within a 5 mile radius of the base. “Support” was defined as a “business community” consisting of retail shopping, office space, financial facilities, service providers, and adequate hotels, housing, schools and proximity to commercial transportation.
If one looks at the Indian Head community, in light of this evaluation criteria, one cannot help but realize we currently fail the criteria for providing adequate support to the base.
Commissioners, you should be concerned. We dodged a bullet this year when the BRAC evaluations were delayed, but time is short and there will be another one soon.
I have friends who work in facilities management at NAVSEA who have told me there will be another BRAC and that Indian Head was on the last list of facilities considered for closure and the work performed there moved elsewhere.
Along with Mr. Brough, I, too, urge you to table the downzoning and focus your efforts on implementing the parts of the plan that will benefit citizens rather than disenfranchising them. Additionally, this may help keep the base open and over 3,000 personnel — the majority of them Charles County taxpayers — employed.
Sal Kasubick, La Plata