SALT LAKE CITY -- Congressman Rob Bishop, R-Utah, during appearances Monday morning in the House and Senate, called on state lawmakers to actively look at options to protect the future of Hill Air Force Base.
Bishop warned that the possibility of sequestration could lead to a loss of as many as one-third of the federal military programs and hit the work line for F-16s at Hill.
He also suggested that another round of Base Realignment and Closure Commission could be in the future.
He said other states are already pouring money into studies to be ready for possible cuts, and he urged state officials to do so as well.
Bishop said if sequestration is allowed to move forward, it could lead to 80,000 furlough notices and a 20 percent reduction in take-home pay.
One option Bishop said should be explored regarding the future of Hill is possibly relocating the Utah Air National Guard to the Weber/Davis county-based facility.
"Look closely at what you're doing with the future of Hill," Bishop told the lawmakers.
Sen. Stuart Reid, R-Ogden, asked the former schoolteacher what he thinks the risk of losing Hill is.
Bishop said Hill has vast programs that would be hard to replace, but noted the Obama administration has already cut military spending by $1.4 trillion.
"It would be dumb to get rid of it, but dumb things have happened. I'm fearful and hopeful," Bishop told state lawmakers.
The former speaker of the Utah House also praised the efforts of legislators in 2012 to initiate action to try to reclaim control of federal lands within the state.