An Examination of the Local Economic Impacts of Military Base Closures
The 1988 Base Closure and Realignment Act empowered the Commission on Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) to undertake five rounds of significant military base closure and realignment. Investigating the economic impacts associated with base closures provides the first step in not only determining whether the BRAC Commission has effectively minimized negative impacts on affected communities but also provides guidance to policy makers in targeting future base closures, and helps affected communities prepare for the economic shocks associated with these events. This article examines (a) the local economic impacts associated with general changes in military base employment; (b) if the first four, completed rounds of BRAC closures have a significant differential impact on county-level employment; (c) whether these BRAC closures exhibit economic spillover effects on the employment of neighboring counties; and (d) if the economic impact associated with BRAC losses differs for enlisted and civilian personnel reductions.
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