Grimm Keeps Army Corps at Fort Hamilton
The Brooklyn Daily Eagle reports:
Buried deep within the bill signed into law by President Barack Obama to avoid a government shutdown, there is a provision that will keep the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers from moving out of the Fort Hamilton Army Base.
Obama signed the bill to keep the federal government funded on Saturday. Under the Fort Hamilton-related provision, the corps is prohibited from using government funds to relocate to another space. The corps had expressed an interest earlier this year to leave Fort Hamilton for swanky office space in Tribeca.
U.S. Rep. Michael Grimm (R-Bay Ridge/Staten Island), who successfully pushed to have the language inserted into the government funding bill, said he was pleased that the legislation was now law.
“It is an enormous victory for the people of Brooklyn and the Fort Hamilton community to solidify in law the corps’ permanent home at the fort,” Grimm said. When officials from the corps first made it known that they were considering leaving the Bay Ridge military base, Grimm boldly said it would not happen on his watch.
“I meant it when I said the corps will leave Fort Hamilton over my dead body,” he said. The new law keeping the corps put will go a long way toward saving the army base from closure when the next round of military base shutdowns takes place, according to Grimm. The federal government conducts a round of base closures once every five years or so. The last round took place in 2005.
Grimm and other officials said they were concerned that the departure of the corps would strip the 186-year-old Fort Hamilton of much of its military mission and leave it vulnerable to a shutdown by a new Base Realignment and Closure Commission (BRAC).
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