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Army scales back, what about Texas?Army scales back, what about Texas?https://www.recenter.tamu.edu/news/newstalk-texas/?Item=4262015-07-09T15:07:00Z2015-07-09T13:15:00Z

SAN ANTONIO - Two big Army installations in Texas will lose 4,569 soldiers over the next two years as a new round of Pentagon budget cuts takes effect at posts across the nation.

A congressional source said Fort Hood — which played a major role in the Iraq and Afghanistan wars — would lose 3,350 soldiers when the Army shutters a senior headquarters to spare combat units. Another 1,219 GIs will be eliminated at Fort Bliss in El Paso.

The scope of the losses was not known for San Antonio, where Joint Base San Antonio-Fort Sam Houston has an $8.3 billion annual economic impact.

The Army said it would announce cuts for individual installations today. The total reduction through fall 2016 would be 40,000 soldiers, bringing it to a low point that has not been seen in decades.

“There is no community, including us, that is not going to be completely and utterly protected from those cuts, and we’ve known that all along,” said Richard Perez, president and CEO of the San Antonio Chamber of Commerce. “In fact, I think we were kicking around the number of 6,000 (in local reductions), maybe 4,000 uniform and 2,000 civilian.”

The troop reductions are part of a dramatic slashing of the Army’s budget that will thin the force from 590,000 soldiers to 450,000 at the end of the 2017 fiscal year.

About 30 communities with installations most likely to absorb the cuts, one of them San Antonio, hosted “listening sessions” over the past year so the Army could gauge the impact of the reductions.

Fort Sam, Fort Hood and Fort Bliss were most likely to suffer deep cuts in Texas. The state is home to 15 active-duty and reserve bases with a $150 billion-a-year economic impact. Some leaders had thought that Hood and Bliss could lose more than 15,000 troops, civilians and dependents.

Click to see the Economic Impact of Army Bases Map.

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