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Last updated 4:10AM ET
March 8, 2021
Officials Worry About Moving Guards to Another City
(APR - Alabama Public Radio ) - North Alabama officials are worried whether their area will be adequately prepared for a disaster after hundreds of National Guard positions are moved from Huntsville and Decatur.

Huntsville Mayor Loretta Spencer and some legislators are among those voicing the concerns. But Guard spokesman Norman Arnold says there will be plenty of Guard members available to help.

About 900 Guard positions are being cut across north Alabama due to changes at Huntsville's 1169th Engineer Group, the 142nd Signal Brigade in Decatur and the 279th Signal Battalion in Huntsville and Marshall County. But about 200 other positions are supposed to be added, for a net loss of 700.

Guard spokesmen say the changes don't mean National Guardsmen will be dropped and paychecks will be lost. They say everyone affected by the changes will have the opportunity to transfer to other units, and retraining will be available if they have to shift to different jobs to stay in the Guard. Guard members have two years to find new positions.

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