AEDC economic impact is more than $600M

Friday, January 15, 2016

The economic impact of Arnold Engineering Development Complex (AEDC), which includes the main complex site in Franklin and Coffee counties and its remote operating locations -- the Hypervelocity Tunnel 9 at White Oak in Silver Spring, Maryland, and the National Full-Scale Aerodynamics Complex at Moffett Field, California -- was $609.3 million for fiscal year 2015.

Each location impacted the local areas through payroll, secondary jobs created through local spending, and other expenditures for supplies, utilities, fuel and services and the spin-off impact of those purchases.

AEDC employed a combination of active-duty military personnel from the Air Force and Navy; Department of Defense civilians; and contractor personnel, which totaled 2,266 personnel in fiscal 2015. Of the 2,266 personnel, 53 were active-duty military; one Air Force Reserve and National Guard; 324 appropriated fund civilian employees (includes general schedule, federal wage board and other military branches); 53 government non-appropriated fund employees; 36 other civilians (credit union, Base Exchange and commissary tenants); and 1,799 contractor and sub-contractor employees.

Additionally, using the Tennessee Valley Authority economic impact model methodology, AEDC estimated that more than 1,608 secondary jobs were created in the local area, for a total of 3,874 jobs directly related to AEDC. Examples of secondary jobs include those created by home construction and at local supermarkets, car dealerships and department stores.

During fiscal 2015, the payroll cost for AEDC government and contractor personnel was $244.2 million. AEDC's direct expenditures -- which include utility costs, service contracts with outside vendors and military health insurance paid to local doctors and hospitals -- was $170 million. Furthermore, the indirect spin-off impact of these direct expenditures is approximately $195 million.

The overall economic impact figure does not include more than $100 million paid to the approximately 4,608 retired military personnel living in the local area. In total, this retired pay group generates more than $154 million, including the spin-off effect.

The economic impact data and secondary employment estimates represent the economic impact of AEDC during fiscal 2015, which runs from Oct. 1, 2014, to Sept. 30, 2015.

AEDC operates the world's largest complex of ground test facilities with a replacement value of more than $11.6 billion.