Wright-Patterson Air Force Base

Lewis Wallace / WYSO

U.S. Representative Mike Turner (R-10th) met with area leaders Monday to talk about economic development and federal policy. Roads, wages and Wright-Patterson Air Force Base were all on the agenda in the meeting with 15 mayors and city officials.

Democrats mentioned President Barack Obama’s proposal to raise the federal minimum wage to $10.10, a point he pushed during his State of the Union address last week.

Rep. Turner wasn’t clear on whether he’d consider supporting the president’s proposal, but said his focus is elsewhere.

The cost to repair weather-related damage to water pipes at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base has reached about $260,000

An official at Wright-Patterson said sub-zero temperatures two weeks ago caused the pipes to burst.

Randy Parmenter, chief of operations for civil engineering at the base, says the burst pipes caused leaks in about 50 buildings.

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force says work on a new building can go ahead in southwest Ohio.

Work on the $35.4 million expansion project was held up after another contractor filed a protest of the award to Turner Construction Co. But the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers reviewed the bid award and rejected the protest.

A notice to proceed was issued Friday.

Lewis Wallace / WYSO

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is seeking out new community partnerships in 2014 in order to cut costs in response to ongoing budget troubles. With the wind-down of two wars and a trend towards trimming in Washington, Wright-Patt is looking for ways to control basic forms of spending on the base.

“As budgets continue to decrease,” said Colonel Cassie Barlow, head of the 88th Air Base Wing, “the Air Force looking for alternative ways to support its mission and to really maintain the quality of life that we’re used to, for our airmen and for their family members.”

Lewis Wallace / WYSO

Dayton-area leaders are breathing sighs of relief as the proposed budget deal in Congress appears to be ending the across-the-board cuts known as sequestration.

“This deal would prevent the sequester for a 2-year period, and it also would give certainty to the Department of Defense,” said Rep. Mike Turner of Ohio’s 10th district. He’s relieved by the outcome after a year of belt-tightening for lots of government bodies, including the Pentagon. With the proposed deal the Pentagon avoids $20 billion in would-be sequestration cuts.

Jerry Kenney / WYSO

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force says it’s ready to move ahead with a planned 224,000 square foot addition that will house the museum’s Presidential Aircraft Gallery and other exhibits.

Turner Construction Co. of Washington, D.C. landed the $35.4 million dollar contract to build the new hangar at Wright-Patt, though the non-profit Air Force Museum Foundation is privately financing the expansion.

Wright-Patterson Air Force Base is expected to privatize more energy and utility operations as it tries to offset steep cuts in the federal defense budget.

The base has already asked for bids to privately manage two water plants on the base that pump more than three millions of gallons a day out of an underground aquifer.

Base spokesman Daryl Mayer tells the Dayton Daily News that the Defense Logistics Agency also has asked for bids to maintain the base infrastructure for waste water collection and natural gas distribution at the state's largest single-site employer.

Jerry Kenney

Visitors to the National Museum of the United States Air Force in Dayton are getting a look at the inside the plane that carried John F. Kennedy’s body from Dallas to Washington, D.C through December 1st. Kennedy's Air Force One is getting extra attention as the nation marks the 50th anniversary of Kennedy’s assassination.

Lewis Wallace / WYSO

Dayton-area officials held a public meeting Tuesday about the effects of sequestration, or automatic federal spending cuts, on the local economy. They say the outlook is gloomy if sequestration continues into 2014.

“Survival mode” and “devastation” were just a couple of the phrases tossed out at the event.

“As this goes downhill, the next thing’s gonna go downhill, and we’re gonna be in a world of hurt,” said Greene County Commission Tom Koogler.

The National Museum of the U.S. Air Force is reopening two galleries on a limited basis due to popular demand.

The Dayton-area museum says the Presidential Gallery and the Research and Development Gallery will be open Thursday through Sunday beginning this Thursday. They closed May 1 because of federal budget reductions.