Wednesday, April 4, 2001 
                           3:00 p.m. or upon adjournment 
                     Lt. Governor Committee Hearing Room, 2E.20 
         Pursuant to a notice posted in accordance with Senate Rule  
         11.18, a public hearing of the Senate Veteran Affairs & Military  
         Installations Committee was held on Wednesday, April 4, 2001, in  
         the Lt. Governor Committee Hearing Room, 2E.20, at Austin,  
         MEMBERS PRESENT:                        MEMBERS ABSENT: 
         Senator Carlos Truan                    Senator Eliot Shapleigh 
         Senator Troy Fraser 
         Senator Tom Haywood 
         Senator Leticia Van de Putte 
         Chairman Truan called the meeting to order at 3:30 p.m.  The  
         Committee Clerk called the roll, and there being a quorum  
         present, the following business was transacted:   
         Senator Van de Putte moved adoption of the minutes from the  
         previous hearings held on March 28, 2001, and April 2, 2001;  
         without objection, it was so ordered.   
         Chairman Truan welcomed guest speakers to the Committee's  
         briefing on Base Realignment and Closures (BRAC) process.   
         Invited guest speaker, Mr. J.J. Gertler, a former senior analyst  
         for the 1995 Base Realignment and Closures Commission, testified  
         on the BRAC process.  Mr. Gertler stated each branch of service  
         makes a list of military bases, according to criteria  
         established by the Department of Defense, that the service  
         believes are excess to its needs and submits those  
         recommendations to the Secretary of Defense.  It is important  
         for each military base to never be on that list to avoid  
         possible closure or realignment.  The BRAC Commission reviews  
         the lists to ensure each service formed the recommendations for  
         closure or realignment according to the Department of Defense's  
         criteria.  The BRAC Commission may then approve, reject, or  
         modify the list;  Mr. Gertler noted that 85% of the time, the  
         BRAC Commission accepts the list as submitted.  When the  
         Department of Defense outlines the scoring criteria, that  
         document may be used preliminarily to judge the possible future  
         of a base. 
         Mr. Gertler then testified on previous BRAC scoring criteria.   
         He stated the importance of each base having something unique,  
         such as great flying weather, which cannot be replicated at  
         other bases.  Construction may be replicated if savings outweigh  
         the long term costs.  Mr. Gertler noted state investments are  
         only important when it reduces federal costs.  The economic  
         impact factor is weighed by the percentage of jobs lost in a  
         community, not other economic activity.  Mr. Gertler then noted  
         that the 8 member BRAC Commission has 2 appointments by the  
         President, 2 by the Speaker of the House, 2 by the Majority  
         Leader in the Senate, and 1 by the Minority Leader in both the  
         House and the Senate; the makeup of the BRAC Commission  
         according to Mr. Gertler, therefore, is diverse and is less  
         likely to be influenced by politics. 
         Mr. Gertler stated BRAC rounds are more likely to occur now for  
         4 reasons: (1) Since 1995, the Department of Defense has counted  
         on BRAC savings in determining budget requests.  Money has been  
         taken from other programs to cover costs since BRAC rounds have  
         not occurred.  (2) There have been 3 elections since 1995 and  
         many new members have not experienced BRAC results before and  
         are open to the idea. (3) The 1995 adjustments, which take 6  
         years to complete, are finished.  (4)  It was determined that  
         additional BRAC rounds would not occur while President Clinton  
         was in office. 
         Invited guest speaker, Mr. Richard Hall, Executive Director of  
         the Red River Redevelopment Authority, testified on the BRAC  
         process.  He stated the services take the criteria outlined by  
         the Department of Defense and assign each one a value, then the  
         service uses a "COBRA" mathematical model and runs the values  
         until the desired result is achieved.  The "COBRA," which stands  
         for Cost of Base Realignment Actions, model is not pure.  Mr.  
         Hall agreed with Mr. Gertler that it is best not to get on the  
         list.  The BRAC Commission may add bases to the recommendations  
         for closures from each service, so it is best to submit an  
         accurate list. 
         Mr. Gertler and Mr. Hall testified that each state may make  
         specific investments, such as infrastructure to effect the  
         scoring criteria of operational readiness, to reduce the chance  
         of closure.  Mr. Gertler and Mr. Hall also made mention that  
         local municipalities may effect the chance of closure with  
         decisions such as zoning. 
         Chairman Truan invited Dr. Charles Hines, Chairman, and Mr.  
         Robert Tokerud, Commissioner, from the Texas Strategic Military  
         Planning Commission, James Christoferson, Director of the Office  
         of Defense Affairs, and William Ehrie, President, Dick  
         Messbarger, Member, and Gary Bushell, Member, from the Texas  
         Defense, Aviation, and Aerospace Alliance to testify on BRAC and  
         military installations in Texas. 
         Mr. Robert Tokerud stated Texas can be friendly to the military  
         by making "quality of life" issues a top priority and Texas can  
         make improvements such as infrastructure.  Mr. Tokerud noted the  
         improvements are needed now, not in 2003 or 2005 when BRAC  
         rounds will have already started.  Mr. Tokerud also stressed the  
         importance of hiring additional staff to work in Washington DC  
         to keep up-to-date information on current decisions. 
         Mr. William Ehrie stated although information may be gathered  
         from looking at previous scoring criteria, military  
         installations need to look to the future and plan for new  
         technologies being developed which will effect that criteria.   
         Texas needs to protect the land, sea, and air used by the  
         military for training from encroachment and look at requirements  
         for new technology.  Mr. Ehrie noted that the BRAC Commission  
         can make independent actions outside of the recommendations for  
         closure or realignment by each service.  Mr. Ehrie agreed with  
         Mr. Tokerud that Texas needs additional staff in Washington DC. 
         Mr. Dick Messbarger stated most of the work to protect a  
         military base is done before the list of recommendations on  
         closures and realignment is created.  Mr. Messbarger also noted  
         the unique characteristic of the best flying weather and largest  
         unencumbered airspace in Kingsville, Texas. 
         Mr. Gary Bushell stated Texas has made many commitments to the  
         military such as the creation of the Texas Strategic Military  
         Planning Commission, the Office of Defense Affairs, and the  
         Senate Veteran Affairs & Military Installations Committee.  Mr.  
         Bushell noted the good legislation coming out of the Committee  
         and how the legislation was addressing the concerns of what  
         Texas can do to prepare.  He then noted Texas can work with  
         Louisiana on highway development to quickly deploy troops  
         through Texas strategic ports. 
         Dr. Charles Hines agreed that it is best not to get on the list  
         of recommendations for closure or realignment and noted  
         additional staff in Washington DC would help on obtaining  
         current information.  Dr. Hines noted Texas must stay on its  
         toes and keep collecting data regarding military installations  
         and the BRAC process.  Mr. Christoferson noted the importance of  
         the Committee in collecting that data.   
         Chairman Truan moved that the committee stand recessed; without  
         objection, it was so ordered.  At 5:29 p.m. the committee  
         Chairman Truan invited Mr. Tullos Wells, former Chairman of the  
         Greater San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, Mr. Bob Rasmussen,  
         Deputy Director of the Greater Kelly Development Authority, and  
         Manuel Longoria, Assistant Director of Economic Development for  
         the City of San Antonio, and Brendan Godfrey, Deputy Director of  
         Brooks Air Force Base to testify on the effects of BRAC after  
         Senator Truan moved that the committee stand recessed; without  
         objection, it was so ordered.  At 5:50 p.m. the committee  
         Mr. Tullos Wells stated before the 1995 BRAC rounds, Kelly Air  
         Force Base provided $11 billion to the San Antonio economy and  
         23% of jobs were related to defense.  Today, only $1.2 billion  
         of San Antonio's economy and 8% of jobs are related to defense.   
         Although growth has occurred in other areas, San Antonio has a  
         net loss of over 10,000 jobs.  Mr. Wells noted politics occur at  
         two levels during the BRAC process, at the Department of Defense  
         level and during the selection of the BRAC Commissioners.  The  
         selection of BRAC Commissioners is most important to ensure  
         Texas has a strong voice during the review of recommendations on  
         base closures and realignments from each service.  Mr. Wells  
         stated there are 3 necessities to being prepared for BRAC, time  
         to prepare, opportunity and support of service, and  
         infrastructure.  The Office of Defense Affairs is very critical  
         to Texas during the BRAC process, especially in identifying  
         missions to attract to Texas military installations.  Mr. Wells  
         thanked Chairman Truan and the Committee for its work on  
         highlighting these issues. 
         Mr. Bob Rasmussen stated San Antonio has had success in the use  
         of space and replacement of most jobs lost due to Kelly's  
         closure.  Grants from the Texas Department of Economic  
         Development and support from the Texas Legislature and the City  
         of San Antonio have helped in the redevelopment of Kelly, but  
         many buildings at Kelly U.S.A. are in atrophy and in need of  
         major repairs.  Chairman Truan noted additional funding was  
         sought during the 76th Legislative Session, but funding was not  
         available.  Boeing has also helped with funding to make upgrades  
         to Kelly facilities necessary to operate commercial companies.   
         Mr. Rasmussen stated Texas needs to remain competitive and on  
         its toes during the upcoming BRAC process.  Chairman Truan noted  
         that Kelly is the first base of its size to experience a closure  
         and had no model with which to compare.  Senator Van de Putte  
         pointed out that the community of San Antonio really came  
         together to support Kelly.  Chairman Truan asked about  
         developments in the cleanup process at Kelly.  Mr. Rasmussen  
         noted the Air Force should have a new report out detailing  
         procedures and a time line for cleanup. 
         Mr. Manuel Longoria outlined a "city-base" concept being  
         considered for Brooks Air Force Base, the first in the nation.   
         The strategy of this concept is to reduce federal cost and avoid  
         future closure.  Chairman Truan stated SB 1214 by Senator Madla  
         recently passed out of the Committee and gave the statutory  
         authority to implement the "city-base" concept.  Zoning  
         encroachment issues have risen around Fort Sam Houston and Camp  
         Bullis.  Mr. Longoria noted that the Director of Planning for  
         the City of San Antonio and the base commanders are working  
         together to address these concerns.  Mr. Longoria also pointed  
         out the heavy activity at Camp Bullis, a medical training  
         facility and hospital, in San Antonio. 
         Mr. Brendan Godfrey noted Camp Bullis has a wide range of  
         activity including exercises by Brooks Air Force Base with live  
         ammunition.  Mr. Godfrey also noted the "city-base" concept is  
         important and thanked Chairman Truan and the Committee for  
         passage of SB 1214.  One of the primary missions of Brooks Air  
         Force Base and Fort Sam Houston is the development of new  
         medical technology, so the military works closely with Texas  
         colleges and universities.  Officials with the Air Force and the  
         City of San Antonio are considering converting Brooks into a  
         research and technology park with the Air Force remaining as an  
         active tenant. 
         Chairman Truan thanked the invited guests for their testimony  
         and making the briefing a success. 
         There being no further business, at 6:31 p.m. Senator Truan  
         moved that the Committee stand recessed subject to the call of  
         the chair.  Without objection, it was so ordered.   
         Senator Carlos F. Truan, Chair 
         Rhonda Pointer, Clerk