910th Airlift Wing, City Partner on Blight Removal
YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio – The city’s Board of Control this morning will approve an agreement with the Air Force Reserve’s 910th Civil Engineer Squadron to collaborate on a blight removal project in the city.
Members of the engineering squadron, based at Youngstown Air Reserve Station in Vienna Township, will kick off the project in the Taft Elementary School neighborhood. As many as 12 vacant, deteriorating structures are to be demolished through the project.
City officials and leadership of the 910th Airlift Wing are expected to sign the project memorandum of understanding following the Board of Control meeting today.
The project has been in the works since it was identified as one of the first goals during meetings of the Air Force Community Partnership Program. Begun in June 2013, the program is designed to develop mutually beneficial partnerships between Air Force installations and surrounding communities.
The authority for the 910th to complete the demolition work in Youngstown is granted by a section of the U.S. Code and the Department of Defense Instruction outlining Realistic Military Training Off Federal Real Property. The project required meetings and required extensive efforts between the Air Force Reserve and city officials to coordinate details such as associated costs and project liability.
Col. James Dignan, 910th Airlift Wing commander, called the project a “win-win” for the city and the 910th.
“Our citizen airmen will receive real-world training they require to do their jobs anywhere in the world right here in our own backyard,” Dignan said. “And the city is able to have access to Air Force Reserve resources to help them battle blight in Youngstown by demolishing these properties.”
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