Florida Senate - 2017                            (NP)    SR 1786
       By Senator Gibson
       6-02070A-17                                           20171786__
    1                          Senate Resolution                        
    2         A resolution expressing support for basing United
    3         States Air Force F-35A Lightning II joint strike
    4         fighter aircraft at the Florida Air National Guard
    5         base at Jacksonville International Airport.
    7         WHEREAS, the F-35A Lightning II is the most advanced
    8  aircraft in the United States Air Force fighter inventory and
    9  will deliver cutting-edge capability to our national security
   10  initiatives for decades to come, and
   11         WHEREAS, the United States Air Force is now conducting a
   12  selection process for F-35 base assignments which could include
   13  the placement of up to 24 F-35A Lightning II aircraft and the
   14  creation of as many as 250 additional jobs in the base locations
   15  chosen, and
   16         WHEREAS, Florida is home to several F-35A Lightning II
   17  manufacturing and training facilities, including the Pratt &
   18  Whitney West Palm Beach Engine Center, the Lockheed Martin
   19  Pinellas Park manufacturing facility, and Orlando’s Lockheed
   20  Martin training systems unit, and
   21         WHEREAS, the Florida Air National Guard boasts
   22  approximately 1,900 highly trained and skilled men and women who
   23  serve in the world’s most dominant Air Force and able National
   24  Guard, and
   25         WHEREAS, Florida offers an abundance of unhindered training
   26  airspace adjacent to the City of Jacksonville which is
   27  accessible to numerous installations and which increases
   28  training time and reduces fuel consumption, and
   29         WHEREAS, the Florida Air National Guard’s 125th Fighter
   30  Wing at Jacksonville International Airport has been named one of
   31  five finalists for basing of F-35A Lightning II aircraft, and
   32         WHEREAS, the 125th Fighter Wing has an economic impact of
   33  more than $100 million annually on Northeast Florida, and
   34         WHEREAS, Jacksonville has strongly supported United States
   35  Department of Defense activities for more than a century and is
   36  home to more than 150,000 veterans and 50,000 active duty,
   37  reserve component, and department personnel, and
   38         WHEREAS, Florida is the most military-friendly state in the
   39  nation, as evidenced by the state’s commitment to policies that
   40  support the continued growth and protection of military assets
   41  and enhance the lives of servicemembers who reside in this
   42  state, NOW, THEREFORE,
   44  Be It Resolved by the Senate of the State of Florida:
   46         That the Florida Senate supports the Florida Air National
   47  Guard in its mission to secure the basing of the F-35A at the
   48  125th Fighter Wing in Jacksonville.