WASHINGTON, D.C. – This week, U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) met with U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis to outline Ohio military priorities. During the meeting, Brown highlighted the need to upgrade the C-130H planes flown at the Youngstown Air Reserve Station (YARS).

Last December, Brown and Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) announced the inclusion of their amendment to prioritize the C-130 upgrades needed at YARS in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which was signed into law by President Obama. The law will encourage the Air Force to act on these upgrades by requiring it to report on how it will prioritize upgrades from C-130H aircrafts to new C-130J units, which YARS needs for its special mission. 

“Ensuring the men and women at Youngstown Air Reserve Station have the equipment they need to carry out their missions is critical to our national security and to Youngstown’s economy,” said Brown. “I appreciate Secretary Mattis meeting with me, and I look forward to working with him in the future on military matters that are important to Ohio.”

In December 2015, Brown and Portman wrote a letter with Congressmen Tim Ryan (D-OH-13), Bill Johnson (R-OH-6), and Dave Joyce (R-OH-14) urging the United States Air Force to replace the YARS 910th Airlift Wing’s current fleet of C-130H aircraft with new C-130J aircrafts to ensure that the 910th’s Department of Defense (DoD)-mandated specialized aerial spray mission continues safely and without interruption.

In January, Brown voted in favor of retired Marine General James Mattis to serve as Secretary of Defense.