- December 22, 2015
IIF 2016 is moving to Charleston, SC, a top destination strategically located near half a dozen key defense installations from each of the services, with a proud military history that stretches back to the revolutionary war. Mark your calendar and make plans to be a part of Installation Innovation 2016.
Behind every excellent defense installation is a city, county or region that provides exemplary commitment to supporting and honoring the service members and their families that call these communities their home.
Don't miss out! Get the latest information on all upcoming ADC events.
Legislation introduced Wednesday by two members of the House Armed Services Committee would freeze the size of the Army and Marine Corps at current levels in an effort to block drawdowns now underway. The 2016 Protecting Our Security Through Utilizing Right-Sized End-Strength (POSTURE) Act — introduced by Mike Turner (R-Ohio), chairman of the Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee, and Chris Gibson (R-N.Y.) — would set the Army’s end strength at 1,035,000 for the total force rather than the service’s planned target of 980,000. The Army’s end strength under the bill would be just below its pre-9/11 troop level …READ MORE
The Navy would cut an aircraft carrier air wing based at Naval Air Station Lemoore, Calif., along with its five associated squadrons, under its $165 billion budget request for fiscal 2017 released earlier this week. The proposal would reduce the number of aircraft carrier air wings in the Navy from 10 to nine. “This proposal will allow the Navy to match the number of air wings to the number of deployable aircraft carriers,” Rear Adm. William Lescher told reporters during a budget briefing Tuesday. “It reflects the practice of having one carrier in refueling and complex overhaul, and one carrier in an extended maintenance availability at any time …READ MORE
Military grocery operations would suffer a $221 million cut under the department’s fiscal 2017 budget request, but the Pentagon’s top financial officer said the proposal would not lower the commissary benefits enjoyed by military families. “This year’s proposal is a different proposal,” Comptroller Mike McCord told reporters Tuesday. “A more modest proposal financially that only tries to get savings out of the business end, does not touch the benefits. So, that’s different in an important way, I think from the troops’ perspective to last year,” McCord said. Last year, the department proposed slashing the Defense Commissary Agency’s budget by $322 million in FY 2016 — out of a total allocation of $1.4 billion — and $1 billion in FY 2017, but lawmakers restored much of that funding for the current year …READ MORE
Bipartisan legislation introduced this week in the Senate would allow the Army’s three manufacturing arsenals to adjust their labor rates to better compete with the private sector. Arsenals now are required to maintain fixed labor rates through the entire year regardless of market conditions, making it difficult for them to compete for contracts or form public-private partnerships, according to a press release from the four senators who sponsored the measure — Mark Kirk (R-Ill.), Chuck Grassley (R-Iowa), Dick Durbin (D-Ill.) and Joni Ernst (R-Iowa). The three-year pilot program created under the legislation is aimed at benefiting the Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center at Rock Island Arsenal, located on the Mississippi River between Iowa and Illinois …READ MORE
The Ohio Air National Guard’s 180th Fighter Wing, based at Toledo Express Airport, is a vital cog in the economy of northwest Ohio, generating a $113.5 million annual economic impact for the region. But the wing also plays a critical role in supporting first responders from surrounding communities. The wing’s firefighters have mutual aid agreements with 27 civilian fire departments nearby, Lt. Col. John Cupp, commander of the 180th Civil Engineering Squadron, said during remarks last month to the Toledo Metropolitan Area Council of Governments’ General Assembly. The wing’s firefighters, who also support the Toledo-Lucas County Port Authority during emergencies at the airport, responded to 263 fire runs in the area last year …READ MORE
With the military facing growing threats around the globe, the Army’s plan to shrink its end strength is ill-advised, two GOP members of the House Armed Services Committee said Wednesday. “It is clear from all of the testimony we’ve received and the information that we’ve received from the Army that this [drawdown] could break the Army, [and] that it would significantly hamper the next president of the United States in their opportunities and capabilities for the military to protect the country,” said Mike Turner (R-Ohio), chairman of the Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee. Turner and Chris Gibson (R-N.Y.) pledged to block the Army from trimming its active-duty end strength to 450,000 soldiers …READ MORE
Last year’s bipartisan budget deal provided the Pentagon much-needed budget relief, supplying an extra $56 billion in spending for fiscal 2016 and 2017 along with a measure of certainty, at least in the short-term. “The present budget allows us to execute our national military and defense strategies,” Bob Work, deputy defense secretary, told reporters Tuesday at the outset of a briefing on the department’s newly released FY 2017 budget request. Still, given the funding limits imposed on defense spending, officials crafting the proposal needed to balance force structure, modernization and readiness, while placing a priority on strengthening conventional deterrents against the most advanced adversaries …READ MORE
Applications for ADC’s new initiative recognizing communities for providing outstanding support to service members and military families are due Friday, Feb. 12. The Great American Defense Communities program is intended to acknowledge the unique contributions cities, counties and regions that host installations make to improve quality of life for service members, veterans and their families. Candidates will be selected based on the broad range of efforts they carry out on behalf of military personnel and their families, covering areas such as education, job opportunities, housing, family support during deployments and community appreciation. The program will use local and national press events, exhibits in Congress and the Pentagon, and recognition during ADC events to highlight the successful initiatives being employed by defense communities to support the nation’s military men and women. A panel of defense community advocates and experts will review the nominations and select up to 10 honorees as Great American Defense Communities. Winners will be announced at the ADC Installation Innovation Forum in Charleston, S.C., at the end of the month. Apply by Friday on the ADC website.READ MORE