Mayor Will Lewis

ACT Representatives Attend Presentation

April 15, 2019


Reps from ACT attend presentation of $5 million to support Navy F-35 infrastructure at FRC East.

On April 4, 2019, Representatives from Allies for Cherry Point’s Tomorrow were delighted to attend the presentation of a $5 million grant from the state of North Carolina to to support F-35 Lightning II related infrastructure at FRC East located at Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C. From left, Marc Finlayson (ACT), James Norment (ACT), James Ogburn, Col Clarence “Bubba” Harper, Commissioner ET Mitchell (ACT), Governor Roy Cooper, Captain Mark Nieto, Mayor William Lewis (ACT.)


Approved plan is great news for City of Havelock

April 16, 2018


There is now a green light for a plan that shortens your drive to the beach and keeps you from all the stop-and-go traffic in Havelock. >>READ MORE


General Assembly Allocates Funds for MCAS Cherry Point

July 14, 2017


The N.C. General Assembly has allocated funding for Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point that will go towards a new maintenance and testing facility.

The state appropriated $3 million to build additional facilities to supplement the Lift Fan Maintenance and Testing Facility planned for FRC East. The facility is designed to improve the industrial base required for the lift fan testing component for the F-35B Joint Strike Fighter aircraft. >>READ MORE


President Trump’s Proposed Defense Budget Benefits MCAS Cherry Point and FRC East

May 26, 2017


For more information, contact Jamie Norment 252.259.2451 or Marc Finlayson 252.617.0757

HAVELOCK, NC– The President’s proposed budget for FY 2017-2018 contains many positive items for the Cherry Point community and Marine Corps. ACT is encouraged to see positive developments on several projects it has actively supported.

ACT has been working on several issues with both the Department of Defense and the Congress that are needed by the Marine Corps and other tenants aboard MCAS Cherry Point. ACT is committed to supporting state and federal budgets and policy that are in the best interest of MCAS Cherry Point, FRC East, and those who serve and work there.

Although the President’s budget proposal will be changed by the Congress over the coming months, ACT will work with all stakeholders to ensure the best possible outcome for MCAS Cherry Point and FRC East.

F-35 Program Fully Supported

We are very pleased to see that the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter is robustly supported in the President’s request with 70 aircraft being procured and that 20 of those are specifically Short Take Vertical Landing (STOVL) variants specifically for the Marines. We will be working with the Marine Corps and other Defense Department users of the F-35 to further improve those numbers in the Congressional budget process as additional funds are made available to procure aircraft already identified as a real need by the Pentagon, but not specifically funded at this stage.

New Construction Budgeted for MCAS Cherry Point

We are pleased that the budget now contains funds for Military Construction funding (MILCON) that will be used to construct a new Lift Fan Test Facility with about $16 million and to upgrade an FRC East hangar to perform Lift Fan work with about $2.7 million. This will allow FRC East to expand its work on F-35Bs for the Marine Corps and U.S. allies who are purchase the STOVL variant. This helps keep Cherry Point on the leading edge of supporting our warfighters and other F-35 users.


As for BRAC, it has been threatened for occurrence for several years and will likely occur at some point, but we are optimistic that Marine Corps readiness and warfighting requirements coupled with enhancements to Cherry Point in both technology and mission capabilities will help keep it a vital part of America’s future. It is important to remain vigilant as the potential for a new BRAC progresses and to continue to do all we can to sustain and improve Cherry Point’s viability and contribution to America’s national security objectives.

Budget Background and Some Specifics

On Tuesday, May 23, 2017, the Trump administration unveiled a budget request, which calls for more than $1 trillion in cuts to a wide range of social programs. The $4.1 trillion budget — called “The New Foundation for American Greatness” — proposes $607 billion in defense discretionary spending and $560 billion in non-defense discretionary spending for 2018.

The budget fully reverses the defense sequester by increasing funding for national defense by $54 billion above the cap in current law and fully offsetting this increase with non-defense discretionary reductions. This includes the previously mentioned $52 billion increase for the Department of Defense as well as $2 billion of increases for other national defense programs, including the National Nuclear Security Administration.

The budget proposal requests $146 billion for Military Personnel, $7.1 billion above FY 2017; $271.9 billion for Operations and Maintenance, $22.8 billion above FY17; $125.2 billion for Procurement, $5.6 billion above FY17; $83.3 billion for RDT&E, $13.4 billion above FY17; and $9 billion for Military Construction, $2.4 billion above FY17.

F-35 Funding

The budget provides $10.8 billion for the procurement of 70 F-35 Lightning Aircraft: 20 short take-off and vertical landing variants for the Marine Corps, four carrier variants for the Navy, and 46 conventional variants for the Air Force.

Air Force
F-35 – 46
$ 4,544,684,000

JSF – 4
$ 582,324,000

JSF STOVL – 20 $ 2,398,139,000

About ACT

Allies for Cherry Point’s Tomorrow, or ACT, was originally formed in the 1990s by a group of concerned civic and business leaders to advocate for Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point and Fleet Readiness Center (FRC-E) East. The rallying cause was around the earlier Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) process. Today, ACT is the only regional association of County and municipal governments, non-profits, businesses, and individuals focused exclusively on advocating for MCAS Cherry Point and FRC East through our elected officials.

ACT supports for the continued presence and success of Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, FRC East, and their civilian employees. ACT also supports economic development related to Cherry Point’s annual $2.1 billion direct economic impact.

ND: 4830-8929-6969, v. 1


ACT Welcomes New Secretary of NC DMVA

January 17, 2017



January 17, 2017

Contact: James W. Norment | (252) 672-5453 or (252) 259-2451

Cherry Point, NC: Allies for Cherry Point’s Tomorrow (ACT), a group that advocates for the growth and continued success of MCAS Cherry Point, Fleet Readiness Center East and their civilian enterprises, welcomes Larry D. Hall of Durham as the new Secretary of the North Carolina Department of Military and Veterans Affairs. The appointment was made January 13 by Governor Roy Cooper at the executive mansion in Raleigh. Secretary Hall was sworn into office on January 16. Until then, he served in the North Carolina House of Representatives. He replaces Cornell Wilson, who stepped down from office on December 31, as the Department’s Secretary.

ACT President and Mayor of the City of Havelock, Will Lewis, stated, “ACT looks forward to working with the new Secretary on Cherry Point priorities. I am confident that our local delegation to the Military Affairs Commission also welcomes Secretary Hall.”

Lewis was grateful for Cornell Wilson’s service, stating, “General Wilson was a tremendous ally in our effort to protect and grow MCAS Cherry Point and FRC East. We appreciate his dedication to the State and commitment to the military and veterans.”

“Based on my experience, I am confident that the Cherry Point community and the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs will work hard to ensure a smooth transition as Secretary Hall takes the helm,” said Marc Finlayson, ACT’s managing consultant.

Lewis added, “We invite Secretary Hall to meet with ACT and tour Cherry Point as soon as he can. We will be working with his staff to build our relationship and commitment to Cherry Point.”

Rep. Hall has served in the North Carolina House of Representatives as the member from North Carolina’s 29th House district, Durham, North Carolina, since 2006. He was first appointed to the position in 2006 by then-Governor Mike Easley. In the legislature, Hall was a member of the House Veterans Affairs Committee and served as the Democratic leader in the House from 2009-2016. He will resign from the House before assuming his new post.

Rep. Hall is no stranger to issues important to military families and former service members. He grew up at Fort Bragg while his father served in the Army. After graduating with a B.S. with Honors in Political Science and Business from Johnson C. Smith University and a J.D. from the School of Law at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, he served 16 years in the United States Marines and the Marine Corps Reserves and also served in the support of the Operations in the Middle East in Lebanon and Iran.

Rep. Hall has been awarded the Navy Achievement Medal, the Marine Corps Reserve Medal, the Armed Forces Reserve Medal, and a Meritorious Unit Citation from the United States Marine Corps.


About Allies for Cherry Point’s Tomorrow

Allies for Cherry Point’s Tomorrow (ACT) advocates for the existence and success of Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, Fleet Readiness Center East and its civilian enterprises. Board members include leaders from Craven, Carteret, Pamlico, and Jones Counties who work closely with Congressional and legislative delegations to push for laws and budget appropriations that will help preserve and grow MCAS Cherry Point—a base crucial to the success of the U.S. military and the economy of the region. For more information, call (252) 631-5021 or visit