August 24, 2015 – wkms 91.3 fm (Murray State’s NPR Station), By Parker Franklin
The Kentucky Commission on Military Affairs has received a $618,437 federal grant to help explore defense-related economic opportunities statewide.
Specifically, those funds come from the Department of Defense's Office of Economic Adjustment, an organization responsible for supporting state and local governments dealing with defense program changes.
The aid’s intended to adjust for recent Army restructuring at Fort Knox and Fort Campbell, the latter of which will lose 363 personnel over the next two years.
KCMA executive director David Thompson says while specific projects haven’t yet been announced, priorities include aerospace and drone research.
“The Office of Economic Adjustment was very receptive to us as we looked at them to help us fund some studies that would look at how to further diversify the economy,” Thompson said. “Not just for those areas, but broadly across Kentucky.”
Thompson says other uses for the cash include further studies on the military’s economic impact along with recommendations for further growth.
According to the state Cabinet for Economic Development, Kentucky shipped out nearly $8 billion in aerospace parts and products last year, up 38 percent from 2013.
The information above is for general awareness only and does not necessarily reflect the views of the Office of Economic Adjustment or the Department of Defense as a whole.