New Hampshire’s Pease Air Base is in the running to be the primary station for a new air refueling tanker. Friday, Governor Maggie Hassan has added her voice to those of the Senate delegation by endorsing the air base’s candidacy.
Governor Hassan sent a letter to the Air Force Chief of Staff praising the 157th Air Refueling Wing at the Pease Air National Guard base.
The Governor’s spokesman, Marc Goldberg, says New Hampshire is one of five bases under consideration for the primary location of the new KC-46A Tanker.
“And we want to make sure,” Goldberg says, “that as these new tankers come online, that they have one here at Pease.”
According to the Air National Guard at Pease, being the primary station means replacing the existing eight aircraft with twelve new ones. The increase would amount to roughly 300-400 additional guard members employed at the base.
The KC-46A Tanker is developed by Boeing and based on its commercial 767 airliner. It’s larger, more fuel efficient and quieter than the older model tankers. The Air Force is expected to announce its decision next spring and selected bases will receive the aircraft no sooner than 2018.