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Posts Tagged ‘Congress/DOD’

Compromise Version of Authorization Bill Retains Earlier BRAC Prohibitions

  • December 9, 2013
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The compromise version of the fiscal 2014 defense authorization bill unveiled Monday by leaders of the House and Senate Armed Services committees retains language barring the Pentagon from initiating a new base closure round included in earlier versions of the legislation. When the House and the Senate Armed Services Committee in June both failed to endorse the Obama administration’s request for a BRAC round in 2015 it was clear that any debate on Capitol Hill over the possibility of scheduling additional base closures would be put off for at least one year …

Negotiators Hope to Announce Budget Deal This Week

  • December 9, 2013
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House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) are trying to wrap up talks by Wednesday on a budget agreement that would provide partial relief for scheduled sequester cuts in fiscal 2014 and 2015. That exact amount of sequester relief is not yet final, but sources indicate it could approach $65 billion over the next two years, with the extra funds evenly split between defense and domestic programs …

Armed Services Leaders Back Plan to Expedite Passage of Defense Bill

  • December 9, 2013
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With time running short before the current session of Congress ends, the leaders of the House and Senate Armed Services panels are hoping a compromise version of the fiscal 2014 defense authorization bill they hashed out behind closed doors can be quickly cleared in both chambers before the end of the year. Committee leaders believe abandoning regular order and moving a “pre-conferenced” bill is the only way to ensure the 51-year streak of enacting an annual defense policy bill does not end this year, they said Monday …

Lawmakers Encouraged about Prospect of Moving Legislation to Shed Federal Properties

  • December 8, 2013
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A bipartisan push may be under way to enact legislation motivating the federal government to thin its portfolio of an estimated 14,000 unneeded properties. Multiple efforts since the beginning of 2011 to reform the process for federal property disposal have not advanced, but following a Capitol Hill roundtable last week featuring real estate experts and former federal officials, two lawmakers are eager to try again …

Defense Hawks Press Their Case with Ryan

  • December 8, 2013
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Republican lawmakers hoping to reverse defense cuts under sequestration appear to support a prospective budget deal being negotiated by House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash). That plan would raise discretionary spending from $967 billion — as mandated for FY 2014 under the Budget Control Act — to $1.001 trillion and turn off much of the increase in sequester cuts the Pentagon’s budget would be forced to accommodate this year …

House Pins Hopes on Passing Informal Conference Report for Defense Bill

  • December 5, 2013
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The best hope for Congress to approve a defense authorization bill for the 52nd straight year is for the House and Senate to take up an informal conference report that top leaders of the Armed Services committees are crafting, Adam Smith (D-Wash.), ranking member of the House panel, said Thursday. With the Senate returning to Capitol Hill at the beginning of next week and the House planning to adjourn Dec. 13, there isn’t enough time for the bill to go through regular order, Smith said …

Ryan, Murray Continue Budget Talks

  • December 5, 2013
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House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) plan to continue talks over the weekend in hopes of forging a budget agreement in time for House lawmakers to vote on it next week. The lead negotiators of the House-Senate budget conference would need to reach a compromise by Dec. 10 so that the House could take it up before adjourning for the year on Dec. 13. The two budget chairs are trying to set topline spending levels for fiscal 2014 and 2015 …

More Difficult Decisions Still Remain, Hagel Says

  • December 4, 2013
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Defense officials still face a number of challenging budget decisions on force structure, compensation and acquisition, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel said Wednesday after unveiling a series of organizational reforms intended to streamline DOD headquarters. “These reductions are only a first step in DOD’s efforts to realign defense spending to meet new fiscal realities and strategic priorities,” Hagel told reporters …

Negotiators Near Compromise over FY’14 Spending

  • December 4, 2013
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The lead negotiators of the House-Senate budget conference are close to an agreement that would raise topline spending for fiscal 2014 and possibly wipe out much of the increase in automatic spending cuts the Pentagon’s budget is scheduled to absorb this year due to sequestration. House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) are trying to strike a final deal in time for lawmakers to take it up next week. If they are successful, the House could vote on the plan next Wednesday …

Pentagon Austerity Measures to Eliminate Top Installations Post

  • December 4, 2013
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The deputy undersecretary of defense (DUSD) for installations and environment will be merged with the assistant secretary for operational energy plans and programs, as part of an array of personnel and funding reductions Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced Wednesday to streamline the department’s overhead. The decision to eliminate DOD’s top installations post came amid a series of organizational changes to the office of secretary of defense (OSD) unveiled by Hagel at a Pentagon press briefing …

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