Gov. Rick Scott & Gov. Rick Perry Letter to President Obama Regarding C-23

Oct 11 • 261 Views • View Comments

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The following letter was just sent from Gov. Scott and Gov. Perry to President Obama urging him to ensure that federal funding is provided to operate and maintain the C-23 aircraft to avoid the “dire consequences looming for combat formations as well as the states that lose this vital capability.”

October 11, 2012

The Honorable Barack Obama
President of the United States
The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Dear Mr. President:

We ask for your immediate assistance and support for C-23 Sherpa funding until
another suitable fixed-wing option is available for our war-fighters and to respond to the
needs of the citizens of Florida and Texas during emergencies. Since the decision was
made to retire these aircraft early without suitable replacements, our state leadership and
Congress have made known the dire consequences looming for combat formations as well
as the states that lose this vital capability. Just as these aircraft have served us well in
theater to resupply the men and women located near smaller airfields, their versatility and
affordability give states a cost-effective means to meet crucial emergency responders’
needs when minutes count to save lives during a disaster.

Although we understand the divestiture of these aircraft has been postponed by
Congress, Florida and Texas have been informed the Department of the Army will not
allow the aircraft to operate after the end of the 2012 calendar year. Accordingly, the
aircraft would be moved, beginning in November, to a maintenance facility for engine
swap and remain at that location indefinitely. If this in fact is the plan, Congress’s intent of
retaining this aircraft has been lost. Congress included language in both the House and
Senate versions of the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act to retain the C-23, and on
September 28, 2012, C-23 preservation was enacted through H.J. RES. 117.

Our country has more than 86,000 armed service members in Afghanistan, and both
Florida and Texas are highly vulnerable states with large populations geographically
exposed to hurricanes, flooding, and wildfires. The nation needs the C-23 as a versatile
and inexpensive asset for our war-fighter and emergency responders. We especially need
to keep units like those in Florida and Texas, which have served with distinction and
received national recognition for operational effectiveness and safety. Costs to maintain
these crucial aircraft are miniscule compared to the security risks that will result from
losing them.

Protecting this important asset for our overseas and domestic commitments until a
suitable replacement capability is identified is essential. It will be a small investment for
our national security. We respectfully urge your intervention to ensure that federal
funding is provided to operate and maintain the C-23, as intended by the legislation that
Congress enacted and you have signed into law.


Rick Scott Rick Perry
Governor Governor

cc: The Honorable John McHugh, Secretary of the Army
General Raymond T. Odierno, Army Chief of Staff

Scott-Perry Letter to President Obama 10-11-12


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