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Vermont Air Guard officials say F-35 jets arriving at Burlington airport in 2019

BURLINGTON, Vt. — The Vermont Air National Guard says 20 F-35 jets are coming to Burlington International Airport next year, despite opposition from local leaders.

Local 22 reports the jets will begin arriving in September 2019. The planes will replace a fleet of older F-16 jets.

Col. Adam Rice says the base has "$100 million in facility upgrades under contract." Upgrades include an operations building, a maintenance hangar and mission simulators.

Officials in South Burlington voted against basing the jets at the airport. Burlington passed a resolution earlier this year requesting the Air Force use an aircraft quieter than the F-35.

The resolutions are not legally binding over the Air Force, which is part of the Department of Defense. Vermont’s congressional delegation supports the jets' basing in Burlington.

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