Klamath Falls, Ore - Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson was in town over the weekend as an invited guest of Congressman Greg Walden. On her visit to Klamath Falls, Secretary Wilson was able to: tour Kingsley Field, fly in an F-15 Eagle (piloted by base commander Col. Jeff Smith,) and meet with local dignitaries to discuss issues involving the Klamath Basin & Kingsley Field.
At the meeting, many topics and local issues were discussed including - health care, housing, employment and education. Secretary Wilson was impressed with how well the community has identified its current issues and how they are dealing with them.
Wilson had also suggested the leaders to tackle - reciprocity of licensure.
When Airmen transfer into locations like Kingsley Field, they are not the only ones to relocate. Spouses, children, and other family members often move with the Airmen. Spouses often have professional licensing obtained through proper education and testing - doctors, teachers, and other licensed professions. Often times, licenses do not transfer easily from state to state. These highly trained spouses may have to wait up to 24-months to work in their field as a professional license is transferred.
Secretary Wilson tasked community leaders to find a solution for this issue.
“With unemployment as low as it is, now is the time to clean up some of these laws that prevent mobility of the workforce,” Secretary Wilson. “We all know how hard that is [transferring licenses], there are boards and commissions for barbers, real estate agents and CPA’s and such [that need to be updated].”
The meeting went well with the dignitaries and Secretary Wilson. Much was discussed but the main consensus of the room was the community does not want Kingsley Field to go anywhere else - Kingsley Field is a major part of the community and the community would suffer if Kingsley were to leave.