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Posts Tagged ‘appropriations’

BRAC is DOD’s Preferred Method to Address Excess Infrastructure, Spokesman Insists

  • March 9, 2014
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Pentagon Press Secretary Rear Adm. John Kirby on Friday successfully deflected a reporter’s question as to when DOD would act to eliminate excess infrastructure outside the bounds of BRAC by repeating multiple times that officials would prefer to pare down the department’s real estate portfolio through a base closure round. “The preferred method is to work with the Congress and to get another round of BRAC,” Kirby said. The reporter asked Kirby to clarify recent statements by Defense Secretary and other top officials that DOD has authorities beyond BRAC to reduce its infrastructure, but the press secretary offered very little in terms of specifics …

Air Force Cancels Major Project at Wright-Pat

  • March 7, 2014
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The Air Force has cancelled a building renovation costing between $5 million and $10 million at Wright-Patterson AFB, Ohio, due to a lack of funding in the current year’s budget. The base’s announcement on Wednesday comes one day after the Air Force unveiled its fiscal 2015 budget request, a proposal which calls for eliminating more than 20,000 active-duty and reserve airmen and retiring more than 200 aircraft, reported the Dayton Daily News. The project, which was in its early stages, would have remodeled the 53,000-square-foot building located on the flight line, adding training rooms, offices and warehouse space. Base officials will attempt to gain funding next year, according to the story.

DOD Stuck with Sequestration, House Panelists Conclude

  • March 7, 2014
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In the 10 days since Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel outlined the department’s latest budget and associated cuts in force structure, Republican lawmakers have denounced the spending plan while Democrats have expressed reservations with the proposed changes. But despite warnings from Hagel and other top Pentagon officials that Congress will need to reverse at least some of the defense cuts imposed under the 2011 Budget Control Act if it wants to avoid weakening the military, the prospect of lawmakers reaching a deal to adjust the spending caps remains quite low …

Staffing Level of Navy to Remain Steady, Personnel Chief Says

  • March 7, 2014
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Despite the looming prospect of far-reaching changes to the armed forces, including reductions in force structure and adjustments to military compensation, the Navy will not be reducing its number of uniformed personnel, Vice Adm. Bill Moran, deputy chief of naval operations, said Wednesday. “I’m not anticipating having to cut people at all … The future is really bright for folks who want to continue to serve,” Moran, who also serves as chief of naval personnel, said in response to the first question during a worldwide all-hands call. He said the Navy expects to have a force of about 324,000 sailors in five years, the same as it does today …

Cleanup Funding For Past BRAC Rounds Would Take Hit under FY’15 Proposal

  • March 6, 2014
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Funding to clean up installations closed during previous BRAC rounds would fall 40 percent to $270.1 million in fiscal 2015, under DOD’s latest budget request. If approved by Congress, the recommendation would continue a steep drop in funding for past base closure rounds since FY 2013. That year, Congress provided $759.6 million for cleanup and other closure costs associated with the five rounds of BRAC. This year, lawmakers allocated $451.4 million for the BRAC account …

Pentagon Paints Itself into Corner with Five-Year Spending Plan

  • March 5, 2014
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Top DOD officials had a difficult time Wednesday explaining to the Senate Armed Services Committee the logical inconsistency between a five-year budget that assumes $115 billion in relief from sequester cuts and the spending plan’s cuts in force structure they said could be avoided with the additional funding. On Tuesday, Pentagon Comptroller Robert Hale told reporters that officials included in its FY 2015-2019 budget a cut in the Army’s active-duty end strength to 420,000 and a reduction to 10 aircraft carrier battle groups. That spending plan assumes that a significant portion of the sequester cuts slated for FY 2016 and beyond would be reversed, allowing the military to avoid some of the most far-reaching impacts of sequestration …

White House Investment Fund Would Provide Injection for DOD Facilities

  • March 4, 2014
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Facilities sustainment and military construction would receive a much-needed infusion in funds in fiscal 2015 under the $56 billion Opportunity, Growth and Security initiative included in the White House’s new budget proposal. The “wish list” of projects is not part of the administration’s base FY 2015 budget, and would require Congress to accept a package of offsets that calls for the elimination of certain tax breaks and alternative spending cuts. As a result, the initiative, which includes $26.4 billion for DOD, almost certainly will not go forward …

Milcon Would Suffer Deep Cut under FY’15 Proposal

  • March 4, 2014
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Spending on new construction would drop 36 percent under DOD’s fiscal 2015 budget request, as the department’s proposal defers many military construction projects in order to fund higher priorities such as operations and readiness. As a result, the proposal funds only the “most critical facility requirements,” according to a DOD overview of the budget. The FY 2015 request calls for $5.4 billion for milcon, down from $8.4 billion allocated for FY 2014 …

Headquarters Restructuring at Air Force to Tackle Installation Support

  • March 4, 2014
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The Air Force’s effort to streamline its headquarters organization through a 20 percent budget cut likely will involve organizational changes affecting oversight of installation support, Secretary Deborah Lee James said last week. “We need to centralize policy and oversight of installation support in such areas as engineering, security forces and contracting, among others,” James said at the Bloomberg Government Defense conference in Washington. The organizational realignment is intended to eliminate areas of administrative overlap …

DOD Spending Plan Faces High Hurdles on the Way to Congressional Acceptance

  • March 4, 2014
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Based on the reaction of both Republicans and Democrats to last week’s preview of the Pentagon’s fiscal 2015 budget request, the administration’s spending plan almost certainly will not be approved without significant changes to its recommendations, particularly those calling for cuts to the Army’s active-duty and reserve forces, adjustments to service members’ benefits and retirement of the A-10 aircraft fleet. “There’s a clear sentiment on both sides, both Republicans and Democrats, on the Armed Services Committee that these cuts are too draconian,” said Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) ….

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