Radcliff bracing for possible news of cuts to Fort Knox - WDRB 41 Louisville News

Radcliff bracing for possible news of cuts to Fort Knox

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RADCLIFF, Ky. (WDRB) -- Businesses around Ft. Knox are hoping for the best but preparing for the worst as they await official word of huge cuts to the Army.

Leo's Donut and Coffee Shop opened just two years ago, but it's already become a staple in Radcliff.

“We have a lot of political figures stop in. A lot of business people have meetings here, a lot of regulars, a lot of Ft. Knox traffic,” said owner Terry Shortt.

Shortt is also on the Radcliff city council. He says reports that the Army could cut as many as 40,000 troops around the world is a blow to those who count on Ft. Knox.

Previous cutbacks have already had an impact.

“We've had a couple of businesses close right outside the gate. We've also had a number of businesses mention that they have suffered from that. So, there's been an economic impact already,” said Shortt.

Brad Richardson, president and CEO of the Hardin Co. Chamber of Commerce, says more than 40% of the area's economy depends on Ft. Knox.

“It would be bad news for Ft. Knox and bad news for the regional economy as well,” said Richardson.

But Richardson hopes past efforts to sell the Pentagon on the importance of the post, and Ft. Knox recently finishing second in an award for excellence will pay off.

“One-Hundred-fifty-four installations throughout the world; 80 applied for these awards, and they won second place. We think that has some impact on how the Army's going to make decisions,” he said.

Radcliff has begun an effort to diversify its economy, recently breaking ground on a new business park.

Shortt says he can no longer rely just on Ft. Knox.

“It's up to every small business owner to make their business successful, not Ft. Knox, not the mayor of the city of Radcliff, not me as a city councilperson. We just have to think creatively and work harder,” he said.

The announcement of the cuts could come as early as this week.

More: Hundreds attend listening session on future of Fort Knox

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