Tuesday, June 27, 2023

Washington, D.C. – Oregon’s U.S. Senator Jeff Merkley, as a member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced today that he secured two community-initiated projects with Senator Wyden totaling $31 million for the Oregon Air National Guard in the FY 24 Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies funding bill. The bill passed out of committee with bipartisan support, putting the Oregon Air National Guard closer than ever to completing phases 3 and 4 of their project to consolidate training facilities for the 125th Special Tactics Squadron (STS).

“Oregon’s Air National Guard do critical work to help protect the security of Oregon and our nation,” said Senator Merkley. “This funding for the Special Tactics Complex will help make Oregon a West Coast hub for special tactics training and provide Oregon’s Air National Guard members with up-to-date training and resources.”

“The efforts from Senator Merkley and his team on these projects directly supports our overall mission success and readiness for your local Portland Air National Guard and its service members,” said Brig. Gen. David Unruh, Commander of the Oregon Air National Guard.

The Special Tactics Squadron’s current buildings for training are set to be returned to the Port of Portland in 2030. The funding for this project will increase operational and energy efficiencies and reduce overall maintenance costs for Oregon National Guard. Once complete, this center is expected to become a West Coast training hub and will be a draw for the 125th Special Tactics Squadron in addition to those looking for specialized training.

Now that the bill has cleared the Appropriations Committee, it heads next to the Senate floor for a full vote before it can be conferenced with its counterpart bill in the U.S. House of Representatives. The final, merged legislation must then be passed by both chambers before it is signed into law.