Lowcountry putting thousands into base protection - WMBFNews.com, Myrtle Beach/Florence SC, Weather

Lowcountry putting thousands into base protection

HILTON HEAD ISLAND, S.C. (AP) - Governments in Beaufort County are putting tens of thousands of dollars into an effort to keep local military bases open.

The Island Packet of Hilton Head reports that Beaufort County is donating $250,000 and another $20,000 was added Tuesday by Hilton Head. The local chamber of commerce's military enhancement committee is also asking for funds from Bluffton, Port Royal and Beaufort.

Officials say proposed budget cuts would devastate the Marine Corps Recruit Depot at Parris Island, the Beaufort Marine Corps Air Station and the Beaufort Naval Hospital.

A study by researchers at Coastal Carolina University shows the bases have an estimated annual economic impact of more than $1 billion. The bases employ more than 8,700 military and civilians personnel and contractors.

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