The Ottawa Citizen is reporting that the size of the regular Canadian Forces will be frozen at 68,000 people for the next several years and the military and Defence Department will look at selling off property and shutting down facilities as part of its belt-tightening – a belt-tightening that each government department is expected to accomplish over the next years. Senator Colin Kenny said closing bases and selling off surplus property is essential since unwanted or underused facilities are costing the military hundreds of millions of dollars annually to maintain. Kenny indicated that up to 25 per cent of DND’s facilities, some of which date back to the Second World War, could be sold or shut down. Worrisome to Newfoundland are his comments regarding Goose Bay: he said Goose Bay in Newfoundland and Labrador is a good example of a site that has become redundant to military needs. “It’s been kept alive by political pressure,” Kenny noted, “and it’s costing millions to keep operating.” Liberal Senator Kenny isn’t the one making the decision, but as the former chairman of the senate’s defence committee, he is certainly in the know. Let the fireworks over Goose Bay begin.
Last Wednesday, after a meeting with heads of government, health officials, police, and even the local