Press conference & luncheon attended by Congresswoman Susan Davis, California Governor’s Military Council, military commanders & defense industry leaders

SAN DIEGO, CA, Oct. 27, 2017 – The San Diego Military Advisory Council (SDMAC) today unveiled its 9th Annual SDMAC Military Economic Impact Study (MEIS) at a press conference and luncheon at the Admiral Kidd Catering & Conference Center located at Naval Base Point Loma. Commissioned by SDMAC and produced by the Fermanian Business and Economic Institute at Point Loma Nazarene University, the annual study solidifies the significant and tremendous impact the military and defense communities bring to the San Diego region. This year’s study includes, for the first time, the U.S. Coast Guard and Veterans Administration.

“On behalf of the SDMAC Board of Directors, I am proud to present the 9th Annual Economic Impact Study” said Dennis Dubard, president of SDMAC. “The study once again shows a comprehensive, incredible picture of the military’s impact in our region. San Diego is home to the largest concentration of military in the world. Its network of Navy, Marine Corps, and Coast Guard bases, intricate supply chain serving major defense contractors, and population of veterans and retirees bring exceptional value to the region. This annual study has become a valuable resource to educating policy and law makers at the local, state, and federal levels about the tremendous value the military and defense communities bring to San Diego.”

Congresswoman Susan Davis, 53rd Congressional District, RDML Yancy Lindsey, USN, Commander Navy Region Southwest, BGen Kevin J. Killea, USMC, Commanding General, Marine Corps Installations West - Marine Corps Base Camp Pendleton, CAPT Joe Buzzella, USCG, Commander, Coast Guard Sector San Diego/Captain of the Port, and Lynn Reaser, Ph.D., CBE Chief Economist Fermanian Business & Economic Institute at Point Loma Nazarene University participated in the press conference.

A luncheon to further examine key insights from the 2017 SDMAC MEIS followed the press conference. Dr. Lynn Reaser, Chief Economist at Point Loma Nazarene University gave a thorough presentation followed by a Q & A session.

Highlights of the 2017 SDMAC Military Economic Impact Study include the following:

  • An estimated total of $25 billion in direct spending related to defense was sent to San Diego County during fiscal year 2017, an amount equal to approximately $7,600 for each of the county's residents.
  • Defense-related activities and spending will generate an estimated $50.1 billion of gross regional product (GRP) for San Diego County in fiscal 2017, which represents 22 percent of the region's total GRP. This is larger than the total output of New Haven, Connecticut, Albuquerque, New Mexico, or Akron, Ohio.
  • The military sector generates more than 340,000 of the region’s total jobs in 2017, or about one out of every five jobs (22%) in San Diego County after accounting for all of the ripple effects of defense spending. This represents an increase from last year’s 300,000 jobs as a result of including the Coast Guard and Veterans Administration in this year’s study.
  • Income generated as a result of all of the direct and multiplier effects of military-linked spending will amount to an estimated $22 billion in fiscal year 2017.
  • The Coast Guard is a key military partner to the Navy and Marine Corps in San Diego in its roles as a law enforcement agency, member of the U.S. Intelligence Community, and first responder. The Coast Guard employed nearly 720 active duty and civilian employees in FY 2017 and with a direct spending base of $66 million contributed about $200 million to San Diego’s GRP.
  • The Veterans Administration in San Diego provides a wide range of services, ranging from health care to education, job training, and loans to the estimated 243,000 veterans who currently reside throughout the County. In FY 2017 the VA employed more than 3,700 individuals. With total direct spending of $3.4 billion, it provided the region with about $4.0 billion in GRP.
  • In fiscal 2017, the 59 U.S. Navy ships home ported in San Diego will see direct spending of about $2.1 billion that will equate to a total economic impact of $6.4 billion in GRP. The two aircraft carriers in San Diego will bring a combined $1.6 billion to the local economy. San Diego’s home-ported ship count is projected to climb to a total of 84 by calendar year 2023.

 The 2018 FORECAST expects total spending funded by the DoD, Coast Guard, and VA to advance to $26.1 billion, a gain of about 3.8%, in FY2018. Defense spending is projected to yield $51.7 billion of San Diego County’s GRP, while generating a total of 343,000 jobs and $22.4 billion of total personal income. Affordable housing for military members and their families, in reasonable proximity to the areas military bases, is one of the most significant challenges the military faces.

SDMAC appreciates the support of Bank of America Merrill Lynch as the Presenting Sponsor of the 9th Annual SDMAC Military Economic Impact Study. Merrill Lynch is a private wealth management division of Bank of America.

SDMAC also appreciates the support of Stanley Black & Decker for sponsoring the Press Conference and Reception.



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SDMAC was founded in 2004 with the mission to facilitate and advance the partnership between the military, elected officials, civic leaders, and the business community in order to enhance the understanding of the military’s many contributions to the San Diego region. Annually, SDMAC commissions an economic impact study showing the considerable benefits from defense-related spending and presence of the military in San Diego. In 2017, San Diego benefitted from more than $25 billion in direct defense spending and was supported by more than 340,000 jobs by the military sector.
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Propel San Diego
SDMAC is the sub-recipient of a $1.8M grant from the Office of Economic Adjustment (OEA) awarded to the City of San Diego. The purpose of the initiative, coined Propel San Diego, is to strengthen the local defense supply chain through analysis of the current supply chain, incentives and assistance for businesses with DoD contracts, and programs designed to increase commercial business. Partners include San Diego Regional Economic Development Corporation, South County Economic Development Council, East County Economic Development Council, and San Diego Workforce Partnership.
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