NORFOLK -- Under a worst-case scenario, the closure of Joint Forces Command could mean the evaporation of 10,000 jobs in Hampton Roads, according to ODU economics professor Vinod Agarwal.
He says the figure includes thousands of jobs lost in retail and other sectors supported by JFCOM employees -- a domino effect. The number of jobs lost depends on how many people will be forced to relocate from the region.
JFCOM said the actual figure is not yet available but provided updated figures stating there are more than 6,300 jobs with a total operating budget of $703,954,000.
News of the plans to close JFCOM came as a shock to businesses near the command in Norfolk.
"We depend on the stability of the military," said Jermaine Lewis, who manages a barber shop on Hampton Boulevard.
In making the announcement Monday, Defense Secretary Robert Gates said Virginia could actually gain jobs when the complete cuts are made because funding could become available for shipbuilding.