Portman to Visit Air Base, Pipefitters Training Center

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – U.S. Sen. Rob Portman will visit Youngstown Air Reserve Station Friday morning, one of two stops he will make  in the Mahoning Valley.

Following his trip to the Vienna Township air base, Portman, R-Ohio, will visit the Plumbers and Pipefitters Local 396 training center in Boardman, according to his office.

Portman’s visit to the air base will be his first, his press secretary, Christyn Keyes, confirmed Wednesday afternoon. YARS is home to the 910th Airlift Wing, which supports missions around the globe and is the Department of Defense’s only large-area, fixed-wing aerial spray mission.

“We are pleased Sen. Portman accepted our invitation to visit,” Col. James Dignan, commander of the 910th Airlift Wing, said in a statement announcing the visit.

During Portman’s tour of the base, he will walk through one of the wing’s C-130 H Hercules tactical cargo units, view its modular aerial spray systems and visit the installation’s firing range, which is slated for replacement.

Portman, who was elected in 2010, “is visiting the base to meet with members of the Air Force and discuss the recent funding he secured in the National Defense Authorization Act as well as his efforts to update the C-130 modernization program,” his spokesman said.

The National Defense Authorization Act, which contained language by Portman requiring modernization of the C-130 fleet in the Air Force Reserve and Air National Guard, was signed into law last December. Defense Department funding measures also include $9.4 million for upgrades to the YARS indoor firing range.

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