Hutchinson talks Ebbing Air National Guard Base at summit

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FILE – In this Jan. 13, 2020, file photo, Arkansas Gov. Asa Hutchinson speaks to reporters in Little Rock, Ark. Hutchinson isn’t on the ballot in Tuesday’s election but he’s still a major player in it. The governor has appeared in an ad for fellow Republican Rep. French Hill, who’s in an unexpectedly tight reelection fight. (AP Photo/Andrew Demillo, File)

FORT SMITH, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — Gov. Asa Hutchinson was in Fort Smith for the Mid-America Aerospace and Defense Alliance Summit today.

The event aims to showcase the importance of the defense and aerospace industry.

It’s taking place just days after Ebbing Air National Guard Base was chosen as the future home for F-35 fighter planes and an F-16 squadron from Singapore.

Hutchinson spoke on how the state benefits from the decision. “The estimates are $800 million to $1 billion annually, and an economic benefit,” Hutchinson said. “To put that in perspective, that’s a 20% increase from an economic boost from all of our military installations across the state.”

The governor went on to say the decision will bring more jobs to the state and will boost the housing market.

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