May 25, 2012 – The Silicon Valley Leadership Group, Joint Venture Silicon Valley and the Bay Area Council this week urged President Obama to keep NASA Ames Moffett Federal Airfield and Hangar One under NASA management both as a key national security asset, disaster response center and as a center for scientific innovation and education. The letter from the three leading Bay Area organizations was in opposition to proposals that management of NASA Ames Moffett Airfield and Hanger One be turned over to the General Services Administration.
“The very vitality and future of NASA Ames as a Center is at risk” if the management shifts away from NASA, the organizations said.
The entire letter is listed below. For further information contact Steve Wright at the Leadership Group (email@example.com / 408.501.7853), Rufus Jeffris at the Bay Area Council (firstname.lastname@example.org /415-946-8725) or Duffy Jennings at Joint Venture (email@example.com / 408-298-9330 ).
May 22, 2012
The Honorable Barack Obama
President of the United States
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue
Washington, D.C. 20510
Dear Mr. President Obama,
On behalf of the Silicon Valley Leadership Group, Joint Venture and the Bay Area Council, we write to underscore our support of retaining NASA Ames Moffett Federal Airfield and Hangar One under NASA management both as a key national security asset, disaster response center and as a center for scientific innovation and education.
We strongly oppose any Obama Administration effort to excess NASA’s current management of Moffett Federal Airfield and Hangar One to GSA or any other agency. The very vitality and future of NASA Ames as a Center is at risk.
Ames’ use of the Airfield includes key missions related to our national security, new innovative frontiers like green aviation and other technology programs, and because of the enhanced use lease programs, Ames has also built strategic partnerships with organizations and businesses that depend on this successful collaboration. These collaborations form a public-private innovation ecosystem unlike anywhere else in the world. With these partnerships we’ve furthered our nation’s understanding and progress in space and aeronautics, and the Airfield is an essential component to future innovation. We believe NASA’s strong and dynamic partnerships at Moffett Federal Airfield are important not just to the Agency, but to the entire country.
The Administration should not want to end the public-private partnerships and significant innovative science-based collaborations currently taking place. These exist because of the national asset of a secured Federal Airfield. Some are already talking about litigation and the jobs that will be lost, as well as the future partnerships that will end. H211’s proposal of $40 million to restore Hangar One will vanish. It will not be reused for new science-based collaborations despite the $25 million the U.S. Navy has already spent to eliminate the environmental risk.
Furthermore, these partners contribute financially to NASA’s maintenance of the Airfield, so there is virtually no impact on the Agency’s budget. In fact, there is nothing preventing NASA from pursuing future space-related partnerships that build on the successful collaborations in place today.
NASA Ames and its Moffett Field and Hangar One comprise a vibrant part of the Silicon Valley innovation ecosystem. An economic benefits study from 2010 found that this innovative center supports more than 8,400 jobs and generates $1.3 billion in annual economic activity. Finding ways to reproduce this successful model should be a national top priority. And at a time when it’s imperative that we focus on ways to foster entrepreneurship, new innovation and create jobs, we strongly urge the Administration to lean forward and embrace good government.
Carl Guardino, President and CEO, Silicon Valley Leadership Group
Russell Hancock, President and CEO, Joint Venture
Jim Wunderman, President and CEO, Bay Area Council