Local News

Battle Over Proposed Landing Field Heads To D.C.

Posted March 29, 2007

— The dispute over a proposed Navy landing field in North Carolina is heading to the nation's capital.

The Navy hopes to practice its own takeoffs and landings in an area near the Beaufort-Washington County line. Two Navy studies show the area is the best place for an outlying landing field, but critics said it is too close to a wildlife refuge for birds.

Critics have also said they are worried about the field's effect on the environment.

Several state leaders, including Gov. Mike Easley and state Agriculture Commissioner Steve Troxler, are against the proposal. U.S. Rep. David Price, D-N.C., has also voiced his opposition to the plan.

Opponents from Washington County will go to Washington D.C. Thursday to ask Congress to withhold funding for the airfield.

The battle over the proposed landing field has been going on for more than six years now. The next public hearing about the outlying landing field will be next Wednesday in Plymouth.


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  • Ashen-Shugar Mar 29, 2007

    The U.S. Navy said it wants to use 30,000 acres to create an area where jet fighter pilots can practice touch-and-go landings. Officials said as many as 70 landings could take place a day.

  • Ashen-Shugar Mar 29, 2007

    Combat pilots would practice aircraft carrier landings with F/A-18 Super Hornets based at Oceana Naval Air Station in Virginia Beach, Va., and Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point in Havelock.

    Navy redeployment plans would base 120 Super Hornets at Oceana and 24 at Cherry Point.

    Dozens of families would be forced to sell their farms to make room for the outlying landing field, or OLF. Opponents also worry that the site is just five miles from Pocosin Lakes National Wildlife Refuge, a winter haven each year for about 100,000 migratory waterfowl.

  • Panther Mar 29, 2007

    I have seen a lot of comments about the wildlife refuge next door to the purposed landing strip. Is this area ALWAYS have a high density of migrating birds? I thought that the Navy like the air force have a program out that requires the pilot to do their training when bird strikes are at there lowest. Have I missed something here or are these fighters going to do landings 24/7. I am willing to bet that this facility would be used heavily at only certain times of the year and other times when bird strike hazards are high, they will not

  • Ashen-Shugar Mar 29, 2007

    What does that have to do with anything? Why move from where they are now?

  • Doctor Dataclerk Mar 29, 2007

    Since you know all about the area and I do to, name me one area this side of the Mississippi River that is not in a wetland and is this unihabited. Just one.

  • Ashen-Shugar Mar 29, 2007

    A couple of other points though, there isn't any planting on that land and the "if you don't plant crops near there", well how far do you consider "near there"? 5,10,15,25 miles? Maybe shut everyone down around the county?

    There is no economic inpact for this strip. There won't be any troops there. So why do you think it's a good idea for them to practice in a new place, away from where they do now. They are practicing "Carrier Landings", they could build strips elsewhere that aren't near a "Wildlife Refuge".

  • Ashen-Shugar Mar 29, 2007

    Ok, so we've established that farmers get subsidies. Congratufrickenlations. What does that have to do with them building a landing strip on that land?

  • Doctor Dataclerk Mar 29, 2007

    Maybe you should check it out yourself. Go to:
    Click on the state, then the county and you can see what every farmer gets. It is broken down every way under the sun. I think you'll be surprised.

  • valdli Mar 29, 2007

    Public Hearings are being held in North Carolina

    coming up next week

    Tuesday April 3 - BEAUFORT COUNTY
    5337 US Hwy. 264 E
    Beaufort Community College
    Washington, NC

    Wednesday April 4 - WASHINGTON COUNTY
    207 Research Station Rd
    Vernon James Research Center Plymouth, NC

    Also being set up is one in Charlotte, NC for April 17th

    for more info www.noolf.com

  • valdli Mar 29, 2007

    Even the NATIONAL RIFLE ASSOCIATION is opposed to the OLF in NC

    All this is about is the people near Oceana Virginia started complaining about jet noise.. so John Warner asked the Navy to find somewhere else to put it, eastern NC is the "lucky duck". The OLF in Virginia is sufficient for the foreseeable future. This is all about politics.

    NO OLF!