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By Ron Munden -- -- December 14, 2018

Today I receive a copy of this email with a link to the attached article.

We are now seeing the effects of the naval shipyard shutdowns. As you will recall Mare Island was closed. Sometimes you wonder what the panel who did these closings was thinking. If 50 percent of the shipyards are closed where do we get overhauls. And it isn’t like you can drive your nuclear sub into any dry dock and say change the oil and check the spark plugs. I’m sending this to Ron.

For more than twenty years I work in a naval shipyard with the primary responsibility was overhauling nuclear attack submarines. In the 1990 many in Washington DC felt that the “Cold War” was over and that many of the Navy mission responsibilities would never be needed again. So, under pressure for Congress and the Administration the Department of Defense began closing facilities.

When I went to work of the Navy in 1967 where 8 naval shipyards employing over 80,000 people. By the end of the 1990 there were three Naval Shipyard employing less than 40,000 people.

The Base Closure and Realignment Commission tried to select facilities to close in an objective manner, but they were under great pressure to cut deep. Some argued that since we had defeated the Soviet Union there was no longer a need for a strong Navy to keep us safe. They assumed that the mission of the Navy would be greatly reduced in this “new world” so the Navy took the deepest cuts.

Other people argued that the country needed the shipyards open even if it scaled back the operations. They said that the country will never be able to build another shipyard. A shipyard is a very complex operation. To build one would be VERY expensive. Despite these warning the government closed two nuclear certified shipyards. I am confident that the country will never replace these valuable resources. As Dr. Forester, an MIT professor said, "Good short term solutions are almost bad long term solutions. This situation proves that he was right.

Today the country find itself in deep SHIT. Read the CNN article and you will understand why.

Washington (CNN)Three of the Navy's nuclear-powered attack submarines are "not certified to dive today" due to maintenance delays caused by overcrowded shipyards, officials revealed Wednesday.


Ghost Town: What BRAC really meant
What BRAC really ment -- 15 years later.
-- click here to see the slideshow --

BRAC Closure List Brings Back Old Memories
Editor's note:
I wrote this story in 2009. I was provoked to write has making a visit the mare Island some 15 years after it closed.

By Ron Munden

As I reviewed the Base Realignment and Closure List late last week I saw a Marshall facility on the list. I also remember another facility that went on the list in the mid-1990s.

The Day That Mare Island Was BRACed

At the time I was working at Mare Island Naval Shipyard in Vallejo, California. I was serving as the Director of Information Resources Management (IRM) for the Shipyard and Director of the NAVSEA Computer Aided Design and Computer Aided Manufacturing Support Detachment (SEACOSD).

For months the rumor had been flying that Mare Island would be on the list. Then one morning you open the newspaper and see Mare Island on the proposed list. The Commission and staff do a series of studies and then vote on the final list that will go to the President. It is very difficult to get off the list. Historically 85% of the facilities placed on the proposed list remain on the final list. The President cannot change the list. He can reject it or forward it to Congress. Congress give the list and up or down vote ? no changes allowed.

I will never forget the morning the vote came. My Division Heads and I sat around the conference table in my office listing to the live broadcast of the BRAC meeting. This was the day they were voting on closure of naval facilities. We really knew the outcome of the vote before it was taken. But when Mare Island was called and the individual Commissioners cast their vote we all held out hope that the vote would be different. It was not.

That vote placed a death sentence on a Navy facility that was some 150 years old and employed 8,500 people at the time. Two years later that number would be almost zero.


MNM: City of Marshall Public Works, Utility Director abruptly resigns on Thursday
Editor's comment:
I am sorry to see J.C. Hughes leave the Public Works Department. I think be did a good job considering the limited resources that were available to him. --Ron Munden

From the Marshall News Messenger:

The City of Marshall’s Public Works and Utilities Director J.C. Hughes abruptly resigned his position during Thursday’s city commission meeting.

Hughes was joined by his wife Beverly Hughes when he took the podium during the public comment portion of Thursday’s meeting and tendered his resignation effective Dec. 31.

Hughes said he is not retiring, just leaving his post with the City of Marshall.

“I have lots of friends and family here in Marshall and I wish the City of Marshall the best,” Hughes said. “I’m not retiring, it’s just time to move on.”

Hughes, who served the city a total of 26 years as an assistant city manager and then public works and water utilities director, also submitted his name to be considered for the city’s interim city manager position the commission has spent the past few months seeking.

The city recently changed their search for an interim city manager into a search for a permanent new city manager and Hughes said on Thursday he had not been notified by the city if he was still in consideration for that position.


By Ron Munden – December 12, 2018

Item 14 C. of the December 13, 2018 meeting of the Marshall City Commission is:

Consider taking action, if the City Commission is ready to do so, as a result of Executive Session discussion related to matters concerning the appointment of a City Manager.

On October 16, 2018 I posted an article titled: “ OPINION: MARSHALL CAN’T – HIRE A CITY MANAGER.”

In the article I questioned the Commissioners ability hire a new city manager that has experiences in communities other than Marshall. Tomorrow night they could prove me wrong. I hope they do.

They could hire a person with the varied experience that is need for moving Marshall forward. I do understand that there will be speakers during the public comment section of the meeting that they try to convince the commissioners that they should hire a city manager from within the current staff. I hope the commissioner do not falter and hire the candidate they have voted to extend an offer.

In my October 16, 2018 article I said:

If it makes the current City Commissioners feel any better other City Commissions have also failed. Three years ago, the City Commission could not agree on a selection for city manager. After spending months without success, this Commission panicked and asked the City Secretary to apply for the job so that they could hire her.


video: A Drive Along California Highway 1 in October 2018
The Northern California Coast is my favorite place in the world. I took these images this year on a drive from Gulala to Jenner California. I converted them into a video yesterday.

Take a look at what I love.



12/11/2018 -- After several delays the Marshall City Commission moved one step closer to hiring a new city manager. After interviewing the last two candidates on Monday night, the four commissioners present voted to enter negations with one of the candidates.

Let’s hold our fingers that the person still wants the job.


MNM: Volunteers discover bad conditions, euthanized dogs at embattled Humane Society of Marion County
JEFFERSON — Volunteers at the Humane Society of Marion County on Monday made a grisly discovery while trying to clean up the dog runs at the embattled Jefferson shelter.

Volunteers Melissa Moit and Christie Woodson had gone out to the Humane Society of Marion County (formerly known as Dixie Humane Society) property, located at 1300 N Polk Street in Jefferson, on Monday morning to help with the clean up after volunteer Gayle Robinson revealed malnourished and injured animals living in bad conditions during the Thanksgiving holidays.

Moit and Woodson entered one of the property’s portable buildings where a washing machine and dryer were located to attempt to clean soiled linens but instead discovered two deep freezers full of dead dogs in plastic bags.

Moit and Woodson called Jefferson Police to report the find but former director of the Humane Society, Caroline Wedding, who still lives in a building on the property as of Monday, told police the dead dogs were from nearby veterinarian Bruce Bradley’s office.

Bradley has served as the Humane Society’s veterinarian.

“She told the police that Dr. Bradley’s freezers broke and he needed to store his euthanized dogs there until the company that disposes of them came to pick them up,” Woodson said.


By Ron Munden – December 9, 2018

Up until yesterday I thought Marshall had the worst animal shelter in Texas but then I read the article “80 Dogs Face Crisis Weekend; Humane Society Calls For Emergency Assistance From Community” by Bob Palmer, the Editor of the Jimplecute. I have posted a link to the story on

So now I have to say Jefferson and Marshall have the two worst animal shelters in the State of Texas.

As I read the Jimplecute article, I thought that Marshall and Jefferson have a common problem; wouldn’t it be great if the two towns could work together on a solution? Of course, I recognize that this is easy to say but much more difficult to forge a working alliance.

There is economy of scale so building one facility that can accommodate the needs of both communities would be cheaper than building two facilities. And there could be some sharing of operating costs.


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