Army Responds To Pinon Canyon Questions

By: Associated Press
By: Associated Press

The acting Army secretary says training Fort Carson soldiers away from the Pinon Canyon training site in southeast Colorado would be costly, and keep soldiers away from home four or five months a year.

The Army has eyed possibly tripling the Pinon Canyon Maneuver Site to more than one-thousand square miles, partly to accommodate modern warfare and more soldiers at Fort Carson.

Acting Army Secretary Pete Geren says that while Cold War units required up to 108,000acres for training, new units trained to control more territory with fewer soldiers need up to 160,000 acres.

He told Colorado Senator Wayne Allard in a letter released today that it would cost millions to send soldiers elsewhere to train.

Allard had asked Geren about intentions for Pinon Canyon. Geren says the Army isn't spending money for an environmental impact statement for expansion this year.

Ranchers and others are worried they'll have to give up their land for any expansion. The Army has said it hopes to find willing sellers.

For more stories about the Pinon Canyon expansion, visit KKTV's Pinon Canyon Reports page.

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  • by Dan Location: Colorado Springs on Jul 12, 2007 at 07:23 AM
    I would love to hear all you people whine when the Army does go away. Yes you understand being away from your family is part of the job when you join up, but when families tell their soldiers that it is too much and when the senior leadship is never developed because soldiers are getting out after their intial 8 year commitments what state will the military be left in? When there are too few volunteers left we will be left with bringing back the draft. When the next round of BRAC closes Carson and moves them closer to one of the larger training areas just watch the city collapse. If you think fees and taxes and utility rates are too high now, just wait for when you have to cover the additional cost of maintaining what we have with fewer people around to do so. While I do feel for the farmers in the southeast, I look at what is more important, a military ready and capable of defending the country when needed or wide swaths of land unused because the governement is paying someone not to farm or raise cattle on it and then other wide swaths of land where the owners are unable to take care of it in inclimate weather. Last time I checked, it was the military that came to the rescue this last winter when farmers and cattle men could not get out of their homes or feed their animals.
  • by Don Location: Colorado Springs on Jul 11, 2007 at 01:20 PM
    There are thousands of acres in Nevada, Utah, Wyoming, that resemble the terrain of the mid-east, better suited for training than removing farmers and ranchers from land they have had for generations. Do not tell me about time away, in this day and age of travel, they can be home as often from Nevada as Pinon Canyon. The army focused on Southeastern Colorado and does not like to be told no. It is time they responded to the desires of the public. Actually they do, or are supposed to work for us. If they were actually focused upon training for the battles that they will be fighting in the future, they might focus upon taking part of a city like Las Vegas. The forces who oppose us know that they can not win in a face to face battle of fire power, but have a chance in the cites, hiding among the local citizens. Yes, Las Vegas might be just perfect?
  • by Troy Location: Colorado Springs on Jul 11, 2007 at 10:29 AM
    'keeping soldiers away from home four or five months a year' well boohoo cry me a river. If they can't handle being away then don't sign up for the military. And as for the cost, since when did the military care about the cost of anything? Leave the ranchers alone and GO AWAY!!
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