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BREAKING 8-13-08 Bossier Mayor Reacts to USAF Delay: "Business as Usual on Cyber Center"
Wednesday, Aug 13, 2008 1:57pm

BOSSIER CITY, LA (By: Tom Pace, Talk of the Town) BREAKING: CYBER NEWS 4pm 8-13-08 At a hastily called news conference today, Mayor Lorenz Walker updated members of the local media that the "bulldozers have started turning dirt" and "itís business as usual" at the site of the Cyber Innovation Center in Bossier City.

Click here to listen to Mayor Walker's full prepared statement recorded by Tom Pace from "The Talk of the Town")

Also addressed at the news conference were questions regarding a recent Internet report that surfaced yesterday indicating a pause in Air Force Cyber Command initiatives. However, the Mayor Walker did not take any questions from the media at the end of his prepared statement.

Mayor Walker said any pauses in Cyber Command activity were "not unexpected, as weíve had them before; this is simply part of a long process in establishing a mission that is so vital to national security.

"We can appreciate the new Air Force leadershipís need for time to organize and prioritize all of the issues facing the Air Force," said Walker. Official comment from Air Force officials is expected in the near future.

"This is a highly sought after economic initiative and remains a very competitive issue nationally," said Walker. "Our efforts to establish a world class Cyber Innovation Center remain on course. We appreciate the tremendous support from the community and encourage that support to continue, as we donít expect any change to our mission in the foreseeable future." 

"While we understand that recent leadership changes at USAF naturally have led to a review of the AFCYBER operation at the federal level, we will continue to position BAFB for a leadership role in that exciting mission no matter how the USAF ultimately structures its cyberspace activities," concluded Walker.

In attendance at the conference were Craig Spohn, Executive Director of the Cyber Innovation Center, and Bill Altimus, Bossier Parish Administrator.

The Cyber Innovation Center brings together academia, defense contractors, research and technology to assist the Department of the Defense and allows the United States to compete with other countries in cyberspace.

Construction is expected to be completed on the first building in the new research park by October 2009, which will house executive suites, Class A office space, state-of-the-art conferencing capabilities and computer labs. Phase 1 plans include a 64-acre research park that houses approximately 500,000 sq ft of office space.

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