During the Alabama Association of County Commissioners’ annual legislative conference last December, Lt. Gov. Ainsworth wants the creation of an Alabama Space Guard to be among the other priority pieces of legislation to be considered during this week’s session.
Since the US Space Force was formally established in 2019, National Guard components for the new branch, similar to Air Force or Army National Guard units, have been discussed by officials from the US Department of Defense and the National Guard Bureau.
The National Defense Authorization Act of 2020, the defense budget that created the US Space Force, required Pentagon officials to prepare and submit a report to Congress containing recommendations for the reserves of unit components to be used within the US Space Force would work.
When the National Defense Authorization Act 2022 was passed last December, no funds were allocated for the creation of a Space National Guard. Lawmakers killed a proposed name change for the Air National Guard that would have renamed it the Air and Space National Guard. Another round of reviews for the possible creation of a National Space Guard has been mandated under the law, with Pentagon officials to do so in the New Year.
On June 2, 2020, the Congressional Budget Office released a report stating that a Space National Guard could potentially cost the Pentagon from $ 100 million to $ 490 million a year.
In a statement to APRAinsworth said a Space Guard unit within the Alabama National Guard would “logically provide much-needed support for US Space Command and create additional jobs and investments in our states.”
On January 13, 2021, Hunstville was selected as the preferred location for the US Space Command headquarters, a decision that Ainsworth said will generate “even more manpower, military infrastructure and federal dollars.”
“The recent actions of Russia and China in the aerospace sector show the importance of the US space command and guards protecting the interests of our nation and ensuring security every minute. “Said Ainsworth.
No bill to create an Alabama Space Guard has been tabled at Alabama State House.
In the months that followed, the DOD’s Inspector General launched an investigation into the decision, which some members of Congress saw as a political reward for the Alabama delegation’s objection to the results of the 2020 presidential election.
A source in Washington said APR that the decision to select Hunstville over other potential locations, including Colorado Springs, was “merit” and not politically motivated. Likewise, Alabama Governor Kay Ivey alleged that the Hunstville choice was “a merit,” and welcomed the Inspector-General’s review.