SEDALIA, Mo. — The U.S. Air Force secretary has visited the Whiteman Air Force Base in Missouri to discuss the future of the base’s aircraft as the agency experiences budget woes.

The Sedalia Democrat reports that Heather Wilson visited the base Tuesday.

Whiteman houses the A-10 Thunderbolt, which is mostly used in close-air support missions for ground troops. Wilson says the A-10 is included in the Air Force’s budget proposal but that the agency is still assessing the aging aircraft’s structural integrity.

Wilson says her main focus is working with Congress on future budgets to allow the Air Force to continue its missions. She says that while the Air Force is “modernizing across the board” with aircraft and weapon systems, budget caps prevent the agency from keeping up with rival countries.

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