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FY 2015 Defense Spending By State report now available for download.

Ridgecrest Region (DD)


The Office of Economic Adjustment awarded Kern County a Defense Industry Adjustment grant to evaluate the need and plan for expanding economic opportunities beyond defense and military industries. The project includes:

  • Developing a leadership group: identify, establish and maintain a leadership group to guide the development and implementation of the study.
  • Conducting economic and workforce analyses: identify the factors, industry clusters and other opportunities to influence the local economic conditions and identify sustainable ways to track changes to the key economic indicators within the region.
  • Developing an economic diversification strategic approach.


Kern County, California is a suburban agricultural county of 864,124 residents that straddles the Los Angeles and the San Joaquin Valley economic regions. Naval Air Weapons Station China Lake (NAWSCL) and Edwards Air Force Base (EAFB) are located in Kern County, and as a major employer in the area, the installations have a significant impact on the economy of the Ridgecrest region and eastern Kern County. The county is a net exporter of labor, with more than 29,000 residents commuting out of the county for jobs versus nearly 22,000 commuting into the county.