The Department of the Army today announced plans for the reduction of the Regular Army from 490,000 to 450,000 Soldiers. This reduction of 40,000 Soldiers will occur in fiscal years 2016 and 2017. 

The post is expected to gain 219 spaces as the 5th Battalion, 5th Air Defense Artillery and the 2nd Battalion, 20th Field Artillery will join the 31st ADA and 75th FA brigades, respectively.

“We are happy the Army recognized what we have to offer the country here in the Lawton-Fort Sill community,” said Joe Gallagher, Deputy to the Commanding General, Fires Center of Excellence and Fort Sill. “Adding both an air defense and field artillery battalion will help Fort Sill continue to lead the future of Fires for the Army into the 21st century,” he said.

Fort Sill is one of four installations that will see growth in this period.

Community leaders from the Lawton-Fort Sill community spoke to representatives of the Supplemental Programmatic Environmental Assessment (SPEA) twice during the evaluation process explaining the crippling economic impacts to the community if Fort Sill were to lose the numbers of soldiers some other posts did. The Army conducted those listening sessions at 30 installations.

Mayor Fred Fitch expressed his thanks towards the Army's decision and for the community's appeal campaign.

"This news brings us a reason to celebrate, to feel pride, relief and immense gratitude." Fitch said. "We are extremely grateful that our story was heard."