The North Carolina State Legislature mandated the establishment of the Advisory Commission on Military Affairs to advise the Governor on how to strengthen the state's relationship with the military. The Commission advises the Governor on ways to reduce and prevent urban encroachment around the five primary military bases in the state to include: Fort Bragg, Seymour Johnson Air Force Base, Marine Corps Air Stations Cherry Point, New River, and Marine Corps Base Camp Lejeune. The Commission focuses on state legislative, administrative, and programmatic initiatives with the following key responsibilities.
- Advise the Governor and Secretary of the Department of Commerce on how to strengthen the state's relationship with the military to protect the installations from the results of future defense budget cuts or military downsizing.
- Develop a strategic plan to provide initiatives to support the long-term viability and prosperity of the military in the state.
- Study ways to improve educational opportunities for military personnel in North Carolina.
- Assist in coordinating the state’s interest in future activities of the U.S. Department of Defense.
In January 2009, the Commission completed a strategic action plan, which promotes the long-term viability of military installations. The plan builds upon past successes of the Commission with a focus on three goals: Military Base Sustainment, Economic Development, and Quality of Life/Community Affairs. The Commission identified a number of key objectives under these goals, which include the following:
- Protect installations from incompatible development that could compromise military missions.
- Seek ways to improve critical infrastructure that supports military installations, ranges and training areas, and existing or potentially expanded missions.
- Support initiatives and programs in the state organized to leverage military and other business opportunities that create jobs, increase the tax base, expand the state economy, and enhance North Carolina citizens' quality of life.
- Promote initiatives, programs, organizations, and legislation that make North Carolina's installations, ranges, training areas, and surrounding communities the best in the world for service members and their families.
- Enhance the State's available workforce for expanding and re-locating industry by supporting initiatives, programs, organizations, and legislation intended to retain transitioning military personnel and family members in the state.
In addition to accomplishing the goals and objectives highlighted in the strategic action plan, the Commission identifies ways to develop support mechanisms to ensure compatible development around all military installations in the state and assist areas affected by rapid growth due to Defense actions.
Related Document: North Carolina Advisory Commission on Military Affairs Strategic Plan