Military Spending Bills To Bring Millions To Ohio

By MALIA RULON, Associated Press Writer

WASHINGTON (AP) - A $1.8 million Cleveland Clinic proposal to develop a handheld device that can identify a bioterrorism attack was one of several Ohio projects in two defense-related spending bills approved by Congress.

Scientists at the clinic hope to develop a device the size of a cellular telephone that can quickly analyze blood samples and identify pathogens used as biowarfare agents.

Funding for this research was included in the $355.4 billion federal defense bill the Senate approved Wednesday. The House approved the bill last week.

Other Ohio projects, including $12.1 million to build new fire stations at the Springfield Air National Guard Base and Rickenbacker Air Force Base, were funded under a $10.5 billion federal military construction bill which has been approved by both houses.

These two spending bills pay for research, training, housing, equipment and infrastructure needs of the nation's military and defense programs. The funds are for use in the 2003 federal fiscal year, which starts Oct. 1.

Altogether, Ohio is on track to receive $54 million for military construction projects and another $123 million for other defense-related projects.

Projects included in the bills:

  • $35 million to buy armored Humvees manufactured by O'Gara-Hess & Eisenhardt Armoring Co. in Fairfield;
  • $21 million for the Air Force Financial Information Resource System to improve accounting procedures;
  • $17.7 million for biotechnology, nanotechnology and other research at the Wright Brothers Institute;
  • $13 million to update a laboratory at Wright-Patterson for Air Force technology;
  • $12 million for a new indoor small-arms training range at Wright-Patterson;
  • $11.9 million to build a 77,000-square-foot Army Reserve complex in North Canton for training, vehicle maintenance, storage, classrooms, a library, learning center and assembly hall;
  • $3.5 million for construction of a new vehicle maintenance facility at the Mansfield Air National Guard Base;
  • $2.5 million for the Urbana-based Grimes Aerospace Co. to buy and install terrain awareness and warning systems for C-130 transport planes;
  • $1.8 million to renovate a 60-bed dormitory at Wright-Patterson; and
  • $1 million to use the Wright-Patterson hospital's hyperbaric chamber to treat children with cerebral palsy.

(Copyright 2002 by The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved.)