1,200 jobs coming to Wright-Patt with realignment plans, Air Force says

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base will gain about 1,200 jobs, including 953 civilian positions, during the upcoming fiscal year as a result of President Obama’s defense priorities and a national realignment approved in 2005.

The tally includes a gain of 279 military positions and a loss of 32 Air Force Reserve part-time “drill” military authorizations. The loss of the drill jobs is mostly due to the Air Force’s plan to retire the 445th Airlift Wing’s 10 C-5 Galaxy transport planes during the next two years and replace them with eight newer C-17 transport aircraft.

Driving the changes are the 2005 base realignment and closure decisions that will move research programs to Wright-Patterson from other bases by Sept. 15, 2011, and the government’s effort to expand its acquisition work force, largely by converting contractor jobs to federal civil service positions. Many of the job shifts were previously announced, while others are new.

The Air Force is making the changes to put “the right skills in the right place,” said Gen. Norton Schwartz, the Air Force’s chief of staff.

The Air Force summarized the changes nationally in what it calls a “force structure realignment” plan, to take effect for the fiscal year that begins on Oct. 1. The service makes the changes, sometimes on an annual basis, to reflect a president’s defense budget proposal and funding priorities.

Converting contractor jobs to civilian ones will give Wright-Patterson an increase of 435 civilian positions, the Air Force said.

The U.S. Air Force School of Aerospace Medicine increases by 268 military and 138 civilian positions as it is relocated to Wright-Patterson from Brooks City-Base, Texas, under the 2005 BRAC plan.

The Aeronautical Systems Center, which manages key aircraft and weapons programs, will increase by 151 civilian positions, the 711th Human Performance Wing will add 103 military and civilian jobs, and the Air Force Materiel Command’s headquarters will add 28 civilian positions.

The National Air and Space Intelligence Center, Air Force Institute of Technology, Electronic Systems Center and Air Force Intelligence, Surveillance and Reconnaissance Agency are among the agencies scheduled to receive smaller civilian staff additions under the plan.

Wright-Patterson, with about 25,000 employees, is already the largest single-site employer in Ohio. It is a key Air Force nerve center as home to acquisition, logistics and research and development operations.

The Air Force also proposed changes for state Air National Guard operations around the country. No manpower changes are proposed for the Ohio Air National Guard operations at Springfield, Columbus or Toledo.

Contact this reporter at (937) 225-2242 or jnolan@DaytonDailyNews.com.

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