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[Congressman Jim Saxton - News Release]
DATE: {Nov. 1, 2006}
(609) 261-5801

Congressman Jim Saxton praises settlement on Ocean County F-16 incident



MOUNT HOLLY, NJ – The Air Force and Little Egg Harbor School District have reached a settlement on the damage to the intermediate school that occurred almost two years ago as a result of F-16 training misfires Congressman Jim Saxton , who helped facilitate the communications between the parties, said today.

"I am pleased that I had the opportunity to help the local community in Little Egg Harbor to resolve this matter," said Saxton. "The Air Force has done the right thing. Their agreement goes a long way towards repairing the actual damages to the school building as well as keeping their relationship with the community healthy."

On November 3, 2004, an Air National Guard F-16C, assigned to the 113th Wing, 121st Fighter Squadron at Andrews Air Force Base, inadvertently misfired approximately 27 training rounds during a training exercise that struck the Little Egg Harbor Intermediate School.

"I also want to thank the community for their unwavering support for our local military installations, in the wake of this incident as well as through the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process," said Saxton. "Much of the success for South Jersey within BRAC, including the creation of the nation’s first megabase and increasing the number of F-16s assigned to the NJ National Guard’s 177th Fighter Wing at Atlantic City International Airport, was a result of working together with our local communities."

There were no injuries as a result of the incident, but there was damage to the roof of the school. Since the incident, the Little Egg Harbor School District has been working with the Air Force on reaching a settlement to reimburse them for the damages to the school. A settlement was reached on October 31, 2006 which will have the Air Force compensate the school district in the amount of $519,070.70.

"I am glad we were able to find a settlement that works for all parties involved," said Saxton.