It isn't exactly joysome news for Joe Citizen's tired pocketbook that Uncle Sam will have to spend four million dollars to put Sampson Navy Base in shape to train Air Force recruits.

Of course, four millions is mere lunch money to an administration that calculates its outlays in the billions; but millions or billions it all comes from the same tired pocketbook.

What happened there at Sampson and why? News reports leave the impression that it was a victim of the general policy of scuttle and drift that marked much of the government's handling of its postwar affairs. The place has been inadequately guarded, vandals and mischief makers have had a field day with the valuable buildings and installations built at the cost of millions for war training purposes.

With the completion of repairs the Air Force expects to bring in a total of 21,000 men, including a training cadre of 5,000 military personnel and civilians and some 16,000 Air Force recruits for basic training. The value of the area for training purposes was proved during the Naval occupation in the last war. It is much too valuable to deteriorate through neglect.

When present defense emergency passes, it is to be hoped that the area will; pass promptly into the hands of the state for its long deferred state park project, as it so nearly did just before of the outbreak of the Korean trouble. This property should be kept up with same regard to Joe Citizen's tired pocketbook; its ultimate conversion into a state park kept in mind by officials and public.