The defense industry on Long Island has been shrinking since its peak during the 1980s, when it employed as many as 80,000 people. Since then, smaller defense budgets, jobs shifts off the Island and consolidation in the industry have combined to reduce the defense presence here to less than half that. Now, $41 billion in federal “sequester” cuts to the defense budget threaten the industry further.
Defense spending remains a political hot button. Some say we must spend to maintain a strong military; others say we should spend less on defense and more on education and social programs.
What do you think? Would you like to see the nation spend less on defense, even if it hurt Long Island's economy?
Vote and leave a comment; results and a selection of comments will appear in next Sunday's paper.