Fort Benjamin Harrison was Central Indiana's major military facility serving during both World Wars, the Cold War, Vietnam War, and several other U.S. actions. The base was closed in 1991. Remaining at Fort Benjamin Harrison is the Major General Emmett J. Bean Federal Center. According to the City of Lawrence, Indiana, “The Finance Center is one of the highest users of technology in the State of Indiana. It is here through the Department of Accounting & Financial Services (DFAS) that the activities of the United States Department of Defense expenditures are accounted and paid for. DFAS processes over 269 million payroll transactions annually, including the salary of the President of the United States.”
The Bean Federal Center is the “United States’ second largest military facility behind the Pentagon,” and “has 60 percent of the nation’s entire usable square footage for DFAS safes, vaults and financial systems, and the only DFAS area for classified data.”
The Emmett J. Bean Federal Center was Indiana’s largest “gainer” in the most recent BRAC. Because Bean is so close to Indianapolis, the largest metropolitan statistical area in the state, the net 2,300 jobs gained by the facility have far less economic impact than the nearly 800 jobs lost from NSA-Crane at the same time. However, the new jobs came with two added benefits. The vast majority of those new jobs are highly skilled positions in finance, accounting, and tech support and those jobs as well as those already in place there, are now more secure than ever. The DoD had initially considered closing the Indianapolis DFAS facility, consolidating its employees at one of the other facilities. However, the independent BRAC committee reaffirmed the desirability of the Indianapolis location and instead closed another facility.