Policy: National Security

National Guard renews Maine low-level flight talks

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PORTLAND, Maine (AP) — The National Guard is trying to restart stalled discussions with the Penobscot Indian Nation over a proposal to double the amount of airspace in which fighter jets could conduct low-level training over western Maine.

The tribe owns 20,000 acres in the training area and remains steadfast in its opposition to the proposal. Chief Kirk Francis says the tribe is trying to determine whether there's value in continuing the discussion.

Fighter pilots are allowed to drop down 500 feet in narrow corridors within the 4,000-square-mile Condor Military Operation Area. The proposal would lower the flight deck across the entire training area, dispersing the noise.

Gov. Paul LePage told the National Guard and the Federal Aviation Administration in 2011 that the expanded training area is a "want, not a need."

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