You don't have to be a member of the military to be affected by personnel cuts at area military bases. The bases are an economic engine for the area. New numbers have been released showing the bases in Eastern Carolina will take the biggest brunt of personnel cuts in the Marine Corps over the next five years.
A total of 7,900 troops are projected to be cut from Camp Lejeune, New River and Cherry Point. Camp Lejeune and New River Air Station in Jacksonville will lose 5,800 troops, while Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point is due to lose 2,100 troops.
The Marine Corps has been looking to cut 20,000 Marines as it scales back from the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan. Officials say the cuts will come over five years, allowing many Marines to serve out their contracts. However, the opportunities for re-enlistment may not be as robust in the future.
Because the cuts will take place over a five-year period, Jacksonville city manager Richard Woodruff believes the impact will be lessened.
Business owners that we talked with said, while they hate to see the Marines and their families go, they also believe it won't be as bad as if they were leaving all at once.