Hoeven: Air Force Secretary to Review Nuclear Missions in Minot

Senator Secured Commitment from Barrett during Confirmation Process to Visit State, Support Nuclear Modernization

WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven, a member of the Senate Defense Appropriations Committee, today announced that Air Force Secretary Barbara Barrett will visit the Minot Air Force Base this Thursday. Hoeven invited Barrett to the state during her confirmation process last year and outlined to her the importance of the state’s missions, including the two nuclear missions in Minot. Barrett’s visit builds on Defense Secretary Mark Esper’s visit to the base last month, where Hoeven stressed the importance of advancing the nation’s nuclear modernization efforts.

“Considering the ongoing efforts of Russia and China, among others, to upgrade their nuclear programs and overcome our capabilities, we need to continue focusing on modernizing our nuclear programs,” said Hoeven. “That’s exactly what we’ve done through the Defense Appropriations Committee, and visits from administration officials like Secretary Barrett and Secretary Esper bolster these important efforts while also highlighting the critical work of our servicemembers in Minot. We appreciate Secretary Barrett for following through on her commitment to us to visit the state, and we look forward to our continued work together to strengthen the ICBM and bomber missions in North Dakota.”

Through his role on the Senate Defense Appropriations Committee, Hoeven helped secure full funding in Fiscal Year 2020 to keep the nuclear modernization programs on, or ahead of, schedule. These include:

  • Upgrades to the B-52, including the procurement of new engines.
  • The Long Range Stand Off (LRSO) missile to replace the aging Air Launched Cruise Missile carried on the B-52.
  • The Ground-Based Strategic Deterrent (GBSD) to replace the Minuteman III.
  • The replacement for the UH-1N Huey helicopters used to provide security for the Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM) silos.
  • Additional funding for a new helicopter facility in Minot.