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Navy holding public meetings about plan to replace older jets at NAS Oceana with newer Super Hornets

MEDITERRANEAN SEA (Dec. 10, 2016) An F/A-18C Hornet assigned to the Wildcats of Strike Fighter Squadron (VFA) 131 launches from the flight deck of the aircraft carrier USS Dwight D. Eisenhower (CVN 69) (U.S. Navy photo by Petty Officer 3rd Class Nathan T. Beard)

VIRGINIA BEACH, Va. – The Navy will be holding two public meetings in Virginia Beach and Chesapeake next week to talk about their proposal to transition all F/A-18A/C/D Hornets at Naval Air Station Oceana to the newer F/A-18E/F Super Hornets.

As it currently stands, several squadrons at Naval Air Station Oceana fly the older Hornets and the rest fly the newer Super Hornets.

The Navy wants to do a one-for-one replacement of all the older Hornets for the newer Super Hornets at each squadron, with the exception of one. That squadron, which serves as a Fleet Replacement Squadron, currently flies both the Hornet and Super Hornet. Their older Hornet aircraft would just be retired with no replacements.

There are currently 291 aircraft stationed at NAS Oceana, comprised of both older and newer jets. The new plan would bring that number down to 251, with all of the jets being newer Super Hornets. However, despite the lower number of aircraft, there would be an increase of 62 personnel.

A U.S. Navy F/A-18 Super Hornet from VFA-106 TAC DEMO team, Naval Air Station Oceana, Virginia, maneuvers during an aerial demonstration during the Sentry Eagle open house July 22, 2017, at Kingsley Field in in Klamath Falls, Ore. (U.S. Air National Guard photo by Techincal Sgt. Jason van Mourik)

A Draft Environmental Assessment report was released August 15 the details the impacts the plan would have on both the base and the community, including noise exposure, air quality, health and public safety, land use and more.

The report stresses that the impacts of the transition will be minimal, with no additional noise or environmental concerns, as well as no additional major construction or modifications to the base.

The public is invited to hear about the proposal and put in their opinions. Opinions put in during previous public comment periods included concerns about aircraft noise levels, flight patterns, flight scheduling, and crash concerns.

The public meetings will be held between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. at the following:

Tuesday, August 29
Columbian Club
1236 Prosperity Road
Virginia Beach, Va.

Wednesday, August 30
Hickory Ruritan Club
2752 Battlefield Blvd.
Chesapeake, Va.

The public can provide comments in writing at the meeting or by visiting OceanaStrikeFighter.com. Additionally, you can mail comments to:

NAS Oceana EA Project Manager (Code EV21/TW),
Naval Facilities Engineering Command (NAVFAC) Atlantic,
6506 Hampton Boulevard, Norfolk, Va. 23508.