Recently, Republican Jerry Carl, representing the 1st Congressional District, dedicated two days to visiting Fort Novosel, previously known as Fort Rucker. This visit focused on understanding the impacts of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) funding on the facility and discussing its future needs.
All of the Alabama congressional delegation voted for the NDAA, with the exception of 2nd Congressional District Congressman Barry Moore, who opposed the military funding. The NDAA sets funding and policy for the Department of Defense (DOD), Department of Energy (DOE) security, Maritime Administration, State Department, Central Intelligence Agency (CIA), Defense Nuclear Safety Board, Naval Petroleum Reserves, and other agencies like the Department of Homeland Security (DHS).
Located in southeast Alabama’s Wiregrass area and covering approximately 63,000 acres, Fort Novosel serves as both the headquarters and the Center of Excellence for U.S. Army Aviation. This establishment plays a pivotal role in the local and regional economy. “Alabama has so much to be proud of, and Fort Novosel ranks high on this list. As the 5th largest employer in Alabama, and the largest employer south of Montgomery, Fort Novosel is the backbone of the Wiregrass and the surrounding communities. Not only does Fort Novosel employ nearly 15,000 people, but it also provides support to an additional 113,000 veterans,” Carl stated in a press statement.
According to the Defense Studies Institute, Fort Novosel significantly contributes to southeast Alabama’s economy, generating about $1.2 billion annually from government contracts for services, products, equipment, and support for organizations and agencies at the fort.
“I just spent two days with Commanding General MG Michael McCurry and his team so I could learn more about the needs and challenges they are facing,” said Carl. He praised the efforts of Senator Britt and Chairman Mike Rogers, highlighting the allocation of over $60 million from the NDAA to Fort Novosel, primarily for improving the barracks’ living conditions. “I proudly supported the NDAA and these dollars going to Fort Novosel because this is a huge step forward for our service members,” he added.
Amidst the political landscape, Carl finds himself in a race with Moore, who currently represents the 2nd Congressional District. Due to redistricting challenges, Moore was drawn out of his former district, setting the stage for a unique electoral battle in a solidly conservative area.
Concluding his remarks, Carl reaffirmed his commitment to Alabama’s military infrastructure. “There is still much work to be done to modernize and grow Fort Novosel, and I will continue fighting for them and all of Alabama’s military installations because we have a duty to provide for our servicemembers who have signed up to protect and fight for our nation.”
Alabama, a state with a strong military presence, is home to five different military bases, serving various purposes including training facilities for the U.S. Army and the U.S. Coast Guard. Throughout his tenure, Carl has been a vocal and active supporter of Alabama’s military families and institutions, further cementing his commitment to the state’s defense sector.