CHICOPEE, Mass (WWLP) – Military bases pour billions of dollars into the Massachusetts economy each year. 22News explains how this impacted Western Massachusetts. It’s not just money, it’s jobs as well. Governor Charlie Baker got an first hand look at one of our military bases this afternoon.
Massachusetts defense contract work contributed $20 billion to the state’s economy in just one year. The state’s military bases contributed more than $13 billion. The Governor stressed how important Westover is to not only the military, but to the economy, by saying it employs more than 2500 people locally.
John Maybury of Maybury Material Handling told 22News, “Well Mass Corp Training has a keen interest in Western Massachusetts, so anything the governor brings to this area, which he has brought us quite a bit of support. From grants to ways that we can enhance workforce training.”
Westover is a federal base, but the Governor’s support is crucial to its future in western Massachusetts. Westover provides worldwide air movement of troopers, supplies, equipment and medical patients. Major General L. Scott an Adjutant General says Westover is vital to the military. “Military wise its very important, because there’s only a couple of bases across the country that have this large strategic lift.”
The report added that 145,000 jobs were supported through defense contracts and the state’s six bases. Massachusetts is the top defense contracting state in New England and ranked sixth nationally in contracts received.