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Rosecrans' local economic impact: $75 million

Solar panels are installed on a hanger at the 139th Airlift Wing hanger at Rosecrans airport in St. Joseph Missouri on March 29, 2009. (U.S. Air Force photo by Maj. Barb Denny) (RELEASED)

Solar panels are installed on a hanger at the 139th Airlift Wing.

4 April 2009 --   In the current economic climate, the Missouri Air National Guard's impact on the local economy does not go unnoticed by leaders.
  Recent news articles, editorials and community functions have singled out the Air Guard's nearly $75 million annual impact as one of the major economic positives in the St. Joseph, Mo., area.
  That impact includes salaries, construction and hotel and restaurant patronage. The 139th Airlift Wing's finance section recently released the figures in its annual Economic Resource Impact Statement.
  The St. Joseph News-Press, in an editorial, called the 139th Airlift Wing "just one of the jewels in our crown," noting the wing and base's impact, especially in local construction contracts that totaled $6.8 million in 2008. The contracts included maintenance, energy conservation work and work on a new taxiway in conjunction with the city of St. Joseph for Rosecrans Memorial Airport.
  Newspaper articles have also detailed the Advanced Airlift Tactics Training Center's contribution, including the addition of about 20 active-duty airmen to the base's rolls.
  The base was also responsible for about $1.3 million of hotel rooms, the largest contributor to the St. Joseph hotel industry.
  "Besides providing a key component of the state and national defense, we provide a substantial portion of the local economy," said Col. Stephen Cotter, 139th Airlift Wing commander. "Payrolls were more than $51.5 million and that contributed to more than 1,100 jobs."
  The Economic Resource Impact Statement describes the overall dollar impact on a 50-mile radius of Rosecrans. The statement uses a gross income multiplier of 1.6, a figure supplied by the Missouri Department of Economic Development.