SANTA MARIA - The unveiling of the new monument to Vandenberg Air Force Base's 30th Space Wing followed remarks by an impressive turnout of federal, state and local officicals.
"We can however be rest assured the men and women assigned to the critical mission of national defense of the United States, are right over that hill, ever watchful for those who would do us harm", said retiring Santa Maria Mayor Larry Lavagnino who said it was an honor to be able to speak at the ceremony in his final days in office.
"Its because of your sacrifices someone like myself with my background is able to stand here and represent our great state", added local State Assemblyman Katcho Achadjian, "I want to thank you for my citizenship."
"As a pillar in our community", said Central Coast Congresswoman Lois Capps, "as a forward thinking and oriented setting for space exploration and protection that we know is so vital to our world and to the security of all freedom loving people."
Other speakers alluded to the monument as a remider of the vital role Vandenberg Air Force Base and the 30th Space Wing also has in the local economy, with the thousands of good paying civilian jobs it provides, and creates, every year.
"Vandenberg Air Force Base has provided unwavering support for our community for many years", said Santa Maria Valley Chamber of Commerce Executive Director Bob Hatch who organized the 30th Space Wing monument effort, "it is our pleasure to recognize this long-standing partnership and reaffirm our committment to and an appreciation for their mission."
Local economists say, using the multiplier effect, the economic impact of Vandenberg Air Force Base and its 30th Space Wing operation on the local economy is as much as one billion dollars a year.
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