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Posts Tagged ‘Congress/DOD’

Installations Need to Consider Consequences of Climate Change

  • December 3, 2013
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Climate change is expected to affect military missions in multiple ways as it influences DOD’s operating environment, shapes geopolitical dynamics across the globe, and accelerates instability or conflict. It also will force the Pentagon to plan for significant impacts to its installations from rising sea levels, storm surges and storm intensity, as well as drought and thawing permafrost. “There’s a lot of stuff out there that is all going to be impacted by changes in the climate,” said John Conger, acting deputy undersecretary of defense for installations and environment …

Former DOD Official Named as Interim Replacement for Carter

  • December 3, 2013
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Christine Fox, who had served as the Pentagon’s director of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation until June, will become the department’s second-in-command starting Thursday, Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel announced yesterday. Fox replaces Deputy Defense Secretary Ash Carter, who is scheduled to step down today. Fox’s appointment by President Obama to serve as acting deputy secretary will make her the highest-ranking woman ever in DOD …

Armed Services Leaders Work toward Compromise Defense Measure

  • December 3, 2013
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To provide a fallback option in case the Senate does not quickly pass a fiscal 2014 defense authorization bill when it returns next week to Capitol Hill, the top leaders of the House and Senate Armed Services committees met behind closed doors Monday to hash out their own version of a conference report that could be easily cleared by the two chambers before the end of the year. The participants — House Chairman Buck McKeon (R-Calif.), House ranking member Adam Smith (D-Wash.), Senate Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mich.) and Senate ranking member James Inhofe (R-Okla.) — said very little following the meeting …

House Move to Pass New CR Likely to Meet Resistance

  • December 3, 2013
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The House may take up a new continuing resolution (CR) to keep the federal government running after Jan. 15, but opposition from Democrats, defense hawks and appropriators, over the measure’s austere spending level could imperil the strategy of House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio). Boehner said Tuesday the chamber may act on the measure next week, after which the House is scheduled to adjourn until Jan. 7. Moving a stopgap bill next week would reduce the pressure on the House to act quickly when the new session begins next year …

Ryan, Murray Continue Talks in Quest for Budget Deal

  • December 2, 2013
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Negotiations between House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) will continue this week as the leaders of the House-Senate budget conference try to reach agreement on a budget framework for the remainder of the fiscal year. Murray “remains hopeful that they can get a deal by the deadline,” her spokesman Eli Zupnick told CQ. The conference committee has a Dec. 13 deadline for striking a budget deal, although the current continuing resolution funding the federal government does not run out until Jan. 15 …

What is the Future of Base Services Like Commissaries?

  • December 2, 2013
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The 2014 Installation Innovation Forum will feature multiple sessions on innovative ways to deliver on-base services as budget pressures force DOD officials to come up with new ways to make their scarce dollars go further. The latest example is a recent request by top defense officials for a plan to close all domestic military grocery stores …

Further Cuts Will Harm Commissary Benefit, Agency CEO Says

  • November 25, 2013
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Military grocery stores struggled during fiscal 2013 to cope with cutbacks in funding triggered by sequestration, Joseph Jeu, director and CEO of the Defense Commissary Agency, told lawmakers last week. Civilian furloughs forced most commissaries to close one day a week for six weeks. A department-wide hiring freeze already had resulted in staffing at two-thirds of the commissaries falling below required levels. As a result, some customers waited in checkout lines for 20 to 30 minutes …

Armed Services Panels Still Aiming to Clear Authorization Bill This Year

  • November 25, 2013
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Staffs for the House and Senate Armed Services committees will work over the next two weeks toward a compromise version of the fiscal 2014 defense authorization bill to help expedite the process of clearing a conference report. After the Senate failed to make significant progress on the measure last week, the chamber is facing a severe time crunch to pass its version of the annual policy bill, S. 1197, before the end of the year …

Defense Bill Could Follow Several Paths to Enactment

  • November 24, 2013
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The House and Senate face a significant time crunch to clear a fiscal 2014 defense authorization bill before the year’s close following the Senate’s failure last week to reach a deal over how to handle amendments, but there are several strategies congressional leaders can adopt to expedite the measure. The simplest way would be for the Senate to strike a deal to expedite debate over the annual policy measure when it returns from its Thanksgiving recess on Dec. 9, either by agreeing to hold a limited number of votes on amendments or by ending debate and proceeding to a final vote …

Budget Negotiators Set Sights on Sequester Relief

  • November 24, 2013
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The lead negotiators for the House-Senate budget conference are continuing to attempt to reach an agreement that would set discretionary spending levels through fiscal 2015 and undo a portion of the sequester cuts over that period. The limited agreement would avoid hot-button issues such as tax increases and entitlement reforms, and instead would rely on user fee increases, federal asset sales and a mix of spending reductions to offset the sequester, reported CQ. House Budget Chairman Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) and Senate Budget Chairwoman Patty Murray (D-Wash.) have discussed a number of scenarios, but so far have not struck a deal. The two plan to continue their talks through the Thanksgiving break …

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