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AEDC contributes almost $600 million into local economy

ARNOLD AIR FORCE BASE. Tenn. -- AEDC's economic impact in Middle Tennessee neared $600 million during government fiscal year 2006. This is an increase of almost $45 million from fiscal year 2005.
AEDC operates the world's largest complex of flight simulation facilities with a replacement value of more that $7.8 billion.

The size of Aerospace Testing Alliance's staff grew as a result of increased test, maintenance and investment workload in fiscal years 2005 and 2006. The majority are well paying engineering and technical positions.

The total economic impact of $599.2 million includes the center's payroll, secondary jobs created locally through the spending of that payroll and other expenditures for supplies, utilities, fuel and services and the spin-off impact of those purchases.
AEDC employed 2,978 people in fiscal year 2006. This number includes active duty military personnel from the Air Force and Navy, government civilian and contractor personnel. Active-duty military members made up three percent of the people at the center.

The 2,978 people employed at AEDC include 90 active duty military members, 21 assigned military reservists, 299 full time, part time and temporary government civilian employees (includes 49 NAF employees) and 2,525 contractor employees plus 43 other personnel (Base Exchange, Commissary, Credit Union, small tenant organizations).
Using the Tennessee Valley Authority economic impact model methodology, it is estimated that an additional 2,054 secondary jobs were created in the local area, for a total of 5,032 jobs directly related to AEDC.

Examples of secondary jobs would be those created to build new houses or jobs created in local supermarkets, car dealerships and department stores.
The payroll cost for AEDC government personnel and contractor employees was more than $158 million. Other indirect expenditures were more than $248 million with the approximately $192 million in indirect spin-off impact.

Direct expenditures include money spent to pay for utilities, service contracts with outside vendors and military health insurance paid to local doctors and hospitals.
This figure does not include $135 million in retired pay paid to retired military personnel in the local area. In addition, a conservative estimate is that more than $26 million is paid to government and contractor civilians who retired from AEDC and live in the local area.

The two retired pay groups generate more than $40 million in spin-off effect. When those figures are added in, AEDC's economic impact soars to more than $800 million.
The base figures do not include test customers like Pratt & Whitney and GE who maintain permanent staff at AEDC to manage tests of their products or other customers who spend time at AEDC during the year to take part in the test process. This would bring the number of people working at AEDC to more than 3,000.

The economic impact data and secondary employment estimates were made using the TVA economic impact model methodology. The Air Force economic model, which uses a different, more conservative methodology, shows the center's economic impact at $470.9 million.