Last week, our new Missouri Military Advocate held one of three meetings to inform and gather information from various stakeholders of military spending in our state. Joe Driskill, the newly appointed Missouri Military Advocate, the Missouri Military Preparedness and Enhancement Commission (MMPEC), and the Hawthorn Foundation sponsored the meeting in Kansas City. We learned several interesting facts from the preliminary study the office is currently conducting.
In total, the Department of Defense (DOD) spends $14 billion annually in Missouri. This translates to a $32 billion economic impact for our state. That is 5% of Missouri's total gross product (GSP). Military spending accounts for 183,000 jobs directly or indirectly, which translates to 7% of the state workforce. So it is obvious that military spending has a huge impact on our state. The study also broke down the military impact to local levels.
Whiteman receives $466,509,734 in direct spending. This becomes an economic impact of $857,779,901. Direct jobs total 7,639 and all employment is 11,509. Direct defense spending for Johnson County amounts to $34.5 million; $1.77 million for Pettis County; and, $0.02 million for Saline County. The 653 zip code areas receive $33 million in salaries.
Finally, the Missouri National Guard has a $1 billion economic impact. Defense retirees total $1 billion in economic impact. Military tourism (Wings Over Whiteman and the various graduations at Fort Leonard Woods) account for $88 million in economic activity. Obviously, military spending is very significant in the Missouri economy.
After this rather impressive list of statistics, the group began to give feedback to the Advocate. We were asked in various ways how we would enhance our state's military mission. We identified some of the threats to our expansion of these activities. We were also asked for some creative thoughts on how to use our advantages and grow these in the future.
I believe the meeting proved to be very productive. Our new Advocate is very excited about educating more Missourians about our role in the defense of our nation, and he is eager to listen to the impacted communities to gather new ideas about enhancing our role with the DOD.
I am pleased to report that the Whiteman area had a very good turnout. Although military spending is important to the entire 51st District, obviously Whiteman is the large defense driver in our community. I would like to personally thank everyone who turned out for the beginning of what I believe will be a very productive relationship.
It is an honor to serve the 51st District in the Missouri House of Representatives. Each week I will issue a capitol report to keep you informed of activities in Jefferson City. Any concerns or issues you might have are of great interest to me. I look forward to your input and thoughts, so please feel free to contact me at any time if you have questions, concerns, or ideas to improve our state government and the quality of life for all Missourians. My telephone number is 573-751-2204 or you may contact me by email at firstname.lastname@example.org. Thank you for working with me to make Missouri a great place to live.