Survey team will decide fate of Eielson's F-16s

FAIRBANKS, Alaska (AP) – The recently announced Air Force site survey team, scheduled to check out both Eielson Air Force Base and Joint Base Elmendorf–Richardson next month, will ultimately help guide the decision to move fighter jets from Fairbanks to Anchorage.

According to Air Force officials, the fighter jets' relocation is projected to save around 35 million dollars by 2017, but skeptics doubt those figures.

Jim Dodson, CEO of the Fairbanks Economic Development Corporation and an instrumental part in helping save Eielson from BRAC closure in 2005 , says the base's closure would ultimately not amount to much of a savings.

“You know, they're not necessarily right. They weren't right in '05, and I don't believe they're right today. If you think about a $35 million savings out of $8.7 billion, that's less than one-half of one percent. Does it really make sense? It doesn't make sense to me, and I'm anxious to see what the survey teams have to say,” he said.