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Economy

Feds May Announce Next Month if Ravenna Will House the Nation's Third Missile Defense Site

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Entrance to Camp Ravenna

A long-awaited decision on whether northeast Ohio will be home to an anti-ballistic-missile site protecting the eastern United States may come in July. That’s the word from a delegation of local advocates who were in Washington this week to lobby for the $4.5 billion installation.  

Sean O'Brien of the 32 District, Ohio Senate
Credit Ohio Senate
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Ohio Senate
Sean O'Brien of the 32nd District at the podium in the Ohio Senate

Camp Ravenna in Portage and Trumbull counties is one of three locations in the running for the missile site if it’s built. Decisions on whether to build it, and then where, have been on hold in Washington.

"Until now," says state Sen. Sean O’Brien, of Bazzeta, from his cell phone on his way back from to helping argue the local case in D.C.

“We just left meeting with the undersecretary of the Air Force and our U.S. senators and representatives, and it has been indicated to us that a decision will be made within the next three weeks.”

Missile Defense Agency graphic
Credit Defense Department website
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Defense Department website
Opening page of U.S. Missile Defense Agency report

O’Brien says he was told that the announcement next month will be at least a yes or no on whether to create creating any new missile defense installation. But it might also be the site choice.

Fort Custer in Michigan and Fort Drum in New York are Camp Ravenna’s competitors.  

If the installation is built  it will create 2,000 construction  jobs  and bring a permanent employment of about 800.

It will also become the third missile defense installation created in the continental United States. The two existing facililities, part of the Ground-based Midcourse Defense system (GMD),  are in California and Alaska and primarily shield from attacks from the west and north.