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Defense Communities 360 Headlines

Arizona Utility to Build Solar Project at Luke AFB

  • January 26, 2014
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The Air Force has selected the electric company that serves much of Arizona to build a photovoltaic solar generation facility at Luke AFB under an enhanced use lease. Arizona Public Service proposes to construct, operate and maintain the project on 106 acres at the base located northwest of Phoenix. The power generated would be used to meet Luke’s renewable energy generation goals. Officials from the Air Force Civil Engineer Center (AFCEC) and the utility now will begin negotiating a lease and environmental requirements. The project’s original timeline has slipped due to the discovery of cultural artifacts dating back 5,000 years, according to the AFCEC website.

Relocation of Army Units Restricted under Omnibus

  • January 26, 2014
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The Army is restricted from relocating units from installations with a significant proportion of civilian employees, according to the omnibus spending bill signed into law earlier this month. The military construction section of the legislation bars the Army from using fiscal 2014 funds to relocate a unit at an installation in which the total number of civilian employees of the Army and contractor personnel exceeds 10 percent of the total number of members of the Army’s regular and reserve components assigned to the installation …

State Funding Could Bolster Ft. Bragg’s Standing in Next BRAC Round

  • January 26, 2014
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Fort Bragg most likely isn’t in danger of suffering the loss of any significant mission in a future BRAC, but installation leadership and the Fort Bragg Regional Alliance wants to shore up several weaknesses that could prevent the post from benefiting from the next base closure round. One shortcoming is the poor road infrastructure of the Fayetteville, N.C., post, garrison commander Col. Jeffrey Sanborn said at the alliance’s annual meeting Friday. Of Fort Bragg’s 57 major intersections, 42 are considered failed or failing …

Long-Term DOD Budget Would Ignore Sequester Spending Caps

  • January 26, 2014
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The White House draft of the Pentagon’s fiscal 2015 budget request allows defense spending to exceed the caps included in the 2011 Budget Control Act starting in FY 2016, reports Bloomberg. The topline spending level for the department in FY 2015 — not including war spending, military construction or Energy Department programs — is about $498 billion as called for under last month’s bipartisan budget deal. That deal reversed $9 billion in FY 2015 sequester cuts …

Governors Urge Administration to Protect Air Guard from Budget Cuts

  • January 23, 2014
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The nation’s governors are calling on the Pentagon to shield the Air National Guard from “disproportionate and damaging” cuts as it prepares its fiscal 2015 budget request. “Reductions in personnel and equipment are inevitable as we transition from war to peace, but they should not adversely affect states nor come at the expense of lost capabilities,” Colorado Gov. John Hickenlooper said last week during the National Governors Association’s State of the States address in Washington, D.C. “The Guard is a ready, capable and experienced fighting force, but they are also essential to their states and communities here at home …

Veterans Support Organization Expands Transition Initiative to California

  • January 23, 2014
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One of the largest organizations representing veterans of Iraq and Afghanistan is expanding an innovative program for helping recent veterans successfully transition to civilian life to California, Iraq and Afghanistan Veterans of America (IAVA) announced Thursday. The Rapid Response Referral Program (RRRP) connects post-9/11 veterans and their families to local resources and to one-on-one support with the organization’s veteran transition managers. The program provides veterans and their families with access to an array of services, including employment, education, housing and mental health …

Omnibus Retains Restriction on Underutilized Facilities

  • January 23, 2014
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The Defense Department is barred from spending fiscal 2014 funds maintaining facilities it no longer uses, according to the omnibus spending bill signed into law last week. The language — originally added on the House floor last July to that chamber’s version of the defense spending bill — is intended to eliminate wasteful spending by the department and is not targeted at installations closed through BRAC …

Defense Committees Take on New Leadership

  • January 23, 2014
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Retirements at the end of the year by the chairmen of the House and Senate Armed Services committees, along with the recent deaths of two long-time appropriators, are resulting in a rapid turnover of the leadership of four defense panels. The retirement announcement last week from Buck McKeon (R-Calif.), chairman of House Armed Services, follows the earlier retirement announcement from Senate Armed Services Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich.). As a result, both committees will have new leaders in the 114th Congress …

White House to Release FY’15 Budget in Early March

  • January 23, 2014
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The White House has settled on March 4 as the date it will submit the fiscal 2015 budget request to Congress, a one-month delay caused by lawmakers’ failure to complete work on the FY 2014 budget before last week. The Office of Management and Budget began doing “passbacks” this week, the process in which the White House delivers its response to agencies’ draft budgets, reported CQ. Passbacks typically are followed by one or more rounds of negotiations …

ESPC at Rock Island Arsenal to Cut Energy Use, Greenhouse Emissions

  • January 23, 2014
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A $61 million energy efficiency contract awarded to Honeywell on Wednesday is expected to trim energy use by approximately 35 percent and generate up to $5.3 million in annual energy and operational savings at the Rock Island Arsenal Joint Manufacturing Technology Center (RIA-JMTC), Ill. “This project lets us tackle our aging infrastructure head on — a difficult task in light of budget cutbacks — so we can operate as efficiently as possible and support mission readiness,” said Col. David Luders, commander for RIA-JMT …

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