Environment, Education, Energy: Policy to People

Defense Bill Spares Oklahoma City’s C-130 Program, At Least Temporarily

Senior Airman Nichelle Anderson / U.S. Air Force

Capt. Steven Martina of the 36th Airlift Squadron communicates to the flight crew of a C-130. President Barack Obama's proposed defense bill ends a program to upgrade the transport plane, jeopardizing hundreds of jobs in Oklahoma City.

The defense funding bill approved today by the U.S. Armed Services Committee delays ending an aircraft modernization program underway in Oklahoma City.

In 2010, Boeing announced plans to move about 550 jobs to Oklahoma City from Long Beach, Calif, to work on upgrades for the Air Force’s C-130 transport planes and to the weapons system of the B-1 bomber.

The bill includes a call for a cost-benefit comparison of ending the C-130-Avionics Modernization Program versus continuing the program, the Associated Press reports.

The program was canceled in President Barack Obama’s federal budget proposal, which officials said would save $2.3 billion through 2017.

Ending the program would jeopardize about 230 jobs, the AP’s Ken Miller reports. The bill will be considered by the full House next week before it’s passed on to the Senate.

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