Military Base Closure Process

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The modern Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process has become a highly legalistic and politically charged administrative process. We believe coming BRAC round(s) will include independent, bipartisan Base Closure Commissions similar to those that were instrumental to the selection process in 1991, 1993, 1995 and 2005 to evaluate Department of Defense (DoD) closure nominations and make final recommendations to the president for approval by Congress. Saving a base from closure during the BRAC process requires a concerted community effort to build a strong technical case with political support. Because Commissions typically approve the great majority of DoD closure nominations, it is critical for a community defending its base to understand DoD's selection process.

The hallmark of the base closure selection process is the establishment by DoD of a target Force Structure Plan (Plan) and Base Closure Criteria (Criteria) (military value, cost, return on investment, etc.). The starting point for any base closure defense must be an examination of DoD closure nominations in light of the Plan and Criteria. Of the closure criteria used in previous base closure rounds, those dealing with the "Military Value" of the installation are given considerably more weight by DoD decision makers. While there may be some changes in the process for future base closure rounds, Military Value criteria are likely to remain the focus of the DoD's selection process.