BILLINGS (AP) – Montana Gov. Steve Bullock says he remains opposed to an Air Force proposal to establish a bomber training area over the Northern Plains that would cover an area larger than West Virginia.
An Air Force decision is due possibly by the end of the month on the plan to expand the Powder River Training Complex over Montana, Wyoming and the Dakotas. Approval also is needed from federal aviation regulators.
Bullock said in a Monday letter to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel and Transportation Secretary Anthony Foxx that the proposal should be dropped. If it moves forward, the Democratic governor asked for changes including more measures to protect civilian aircraft from harm.
The proposed expansion would quadruple the training airspace and make it the largest over the continental United States.