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Office of the Press Secretary

For Immediate Release January 7, 2000


I am pleased to announce today that my budget for next year will include $30 million for a C-130J flight training simulator at the Little Rock Air Force Base. The Little Rock Air Force Base, the preeminent training location for C130s, has long served a highly significant role in our nation's system of national defense.

In fiscal year 2002, my budget provides $10 million for a facility to house this simulator. I am also calling for upgrades to the existing simulators -- one each in fiscal year 2001, fiscal year 2002, and fiscal year 2003 -- for a total of over $12 million.

Also, due to the strong efforts of Representative Snyder, we will also fund over $9 million for a much needed fitness facility at the base.

Finally, my budget will call for four C-130Js -- two for the Air Force and two for the Marines.

I believe the simulators, the associated facilities, and the planes I am announcing today will support the Little Rock Air Force Base as it continues to serve the vital function of training our nation's pilots, and will ensure a strong C130 fleet, continuing its vital role in protecting U.S. national interests.

I want to specifically thank Senator Blanche Lincoln and Representative Vic Snyder for their tireless efforts on behalf of the base. Without their attention to every detail of this program, I would not be making this announcement today. I look forward to working with Congress to ensure that these important components are fully funded in next year's budget.