Senate Panel Advances Milcon Spending Measure
Recommended BRAC spending levels in the fiscal 2012 spending bill approved Tuesday by the Senate Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Subcommittee match the president’s budget request but vary slightly from the House version, leaving a little room for negotiation when Congress reconciles the two chambers’ proposals.
The Senate subcommittee calls for spending $259 million for BRAC 2005 and $324 million for the BRAC 1990 account, which funds environmental cleanup from the first four base closure rounds. When the House’s milcon spending bill was marked up in subcommittee, lawmakers voted to shift $50 million from the BRAC 2005 account to the BRAC 1990 one, accounting for the small variance between the two chambers.
Under the Senate version, funding for legacy BRAC bases would be cut by $37 million compared to the current fiscal year. BRAC 2005 received $2.4 billion for FY 2011, which is intended to be the last year to carry out the recommendations.
Overall, the Senate panel would provide $13.7 billion for all of the bill’s military construction accounts, $1.0 billion below the president’s request. That shortfall would all come out of the account for active component milcon projects, including operational, training and research facilities, readiness centers, barracks, schools, hospitals and clinics. The bill calls for $11.1 billion for active and reserve component milcon.
Family housing programs would receive $1.7 billion, the same as the president’s request but $125 million below the FY 2011 enacted amount.
The full committee will mark up the measure Thursday.