- Associated Press - Saturday, May 28, 2016

CONCORD, N.H. (AP) - New Hampshire’s U.S. senators say they are disappointed that the Air Force is facing development challenges in a new aerial refueling tanker that’s due to come to the Pease Air National Guard Base in two years.

The KC-46A tankers are to take the place of the Air Force’s current fleet of 1950s-era KC-135s.

Pease, home to the New Hampshire Air National Guard’s 157th Air Refueling Wing, is scheduled to be the first Air National Guard unit to receive the next-generation tankers in fiscal year 2018.

Democrat Jeanne Shaheen and Republican Kelly Ayotte say they are confident that Boeing and the Air Force are working hard to address the challenges as quickly and effectively as possible.

“We are so proud that the 157th Air Refueling Wing earned the right to be the first Air National Guard unit in the nation to receive the next-generation KC-46A tanker and we will continue to push Boeing and the Air Force to deliver the aircraft to Pease on schedule,” the senators said in a statement.

The senators say they are committed to the program and will monitor its progress very closely “to protect taxpayers, advocate for the members of the New Hampshire Air National Guard and ensure our warfighters receive the world’s best possible tanker.”

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