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Posts Tagged ‘defense authorization bill’

Reed May Decline Top Democratic Post on Senate Armed Services

  • October 30, 2014
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Rhode Island Sen. Jack Reed (D) has not yet decided whether he wants the top Democratic spot on the Senate Armed Services Committee or the Banking Committee in the next Congress. With the retirement of Sens. Carl Levin (D-Mich.), now Armed Services chairman, and Tim Johnson (D-S.D.), Banking chair, Reed will be the most senior Democrat on both committees. Reed had been widely expected to take the top spot on Armed Services, but now he appears to be considering the Banking post as a possibility …

Forbes to Pursue Armed Services Chair

  • October 29, 2014
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Rep. Randy Forbes (R-Va.) has decided to challenge frontrunner Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) to chair the House Armed Services Committee in the 114th Congress, a Forbes spokesman said Wednesday. Forbes faces an uphill battle for the powerful post as Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.), the outgoing chairman, has indicated he favors Thornberry, reported the Hill. Thornberry has served as the panel’s vice chairman since McKeon assumed the top spot four years ago. Forbes chairs the panel’s Seapower and Projection Forces Subcommittee; he previously was chairman of the Readiness Subcommittee, which is responsible for overseeing installations and BRAC policy …

D.C. Hospital’s Bid for Chunk of Walter Reed Could Jeopardize Reuse Project

  • October 26, 2014
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The State Department’s request to redraw the boundaries for splitting the former Walter Reed Army Medical Center between it and the District of Columbia in response to an effort by a Washington, D.C.-based pediatric hospital to obtain a parcel on the campus threatens the city’s redevelopment plans, D.C. Mayor Vincent Gray said last week. The Children’s National Medical Center obtained language in the House version of the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill permitting the Army to convey 13.2 acres to the hospital at no cost for a biomedical research institute. The tract would come out of the 43.5-acre parcel slated to be conveyed to the State Department for a foreign missions center …

Pentagon Likely to Conduct Study of Excess Capacity

  • October 22, 2014
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DOD may study the need for additional base closures even if language in the House version of the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill calling for a comprehensive assessment of excess infrastructure is stripped from the conference report, John Conger, acting deputy undersecretary for installations and environment, said Wednesday. “Even if it doesn’t end up in the final version, I think it’s a signal that we can go ahead and do a capacity analysis at a parametric level,” Conger told CQ. “It’s not a bad thing to have those numbers,” he said. The bill language directs DOD to compare 20-year force structure plans for each of the services with an inventory of their installations to determine the level of excess infrastructure throughout the department …

Work Upbraids Congress over Opposition to Cost-Saving Reforms

  • October 1, 2014
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The almost universal rejection by lawmakers of a series of belt-tightening reforms to military compensation and weapons systems retirements proposed by the Pentagon will create an estimated $70 billion hole in its five-year budget, Deputy Defense Secretary Robert Work told the Council on Foreign Relations this week. The department’s fiscal 2015 budget called for slashing the subsidy for commissaries and slowing increases in the basic allowance for housing, along with retiring its fleet of A-10 close air support aircraft and other weapons. “These were what we considered to be pretty reasonable approaches, but Congress said ‘No …

Authorization Bill Coming in Some Form, Levin Says

  • September 24, 2014
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Congress will pass the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill this year, although it’s unlikely it will occur through regular order with the Senate passing its version before it goes to a House-Senate conference, Carl Levin (D-Mich.), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, told reporters Wednesday. Levin’s comments essentially confirmed that the annual defense policy bill most likely will follow a path similar to the one it went down last year after it stalled in the Senate in November when the two parties failed to reach an agreement over handling amendments …

House, Senate Committees Slated to Hash out Defense Authorization Bill

  • September 15, 2014
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Members of the House and Senate Armed Services Committees are scheduled to meet this week to begin discussions on crafting a compromise fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill, a move signaling that the Senate is unlikely to take up its version of the annual defense policy bill. The discussions would replace a formal House-Senate conference, with the effort echoing the path the two committees went down last year after the FY 2014 authorization bill got hung up in the Senate in November …

Chances Dim for September Vote on Policy Bill, Levin Says

  • September 10, 2014
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The Senate likely will not act on the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill before lawmakers leave Washington later this month, Carl Levin (D-Mich.), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, told reporters Wednesday. Levin is not giving up, though, and continues to work with James Inhofe (R-Okla.), the panel’s ranking member, to put together a list of relevant amendments which could be considered in a limited amount of floor time. His goal is to reach a compromise with Inhofe over a unanimous consent agreement, reported the Hill. About 140 amendments have been attached to the annual policy bill. The Senate could finish debating the measure in one or two days, Levin said. The path, however, has become more complicated as a result of the debate over whether Congress should vote to authorize the use of military force against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria.

Thornberry Firmly against Holding a BRAC Round Soon

  • September 8, 2014
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Rep. Mac Thornberry (R-Texas), considered the frontrunner to replace Rep. Buck McKeon (R-Calif.) in the next Congress as chair of the Armed Services Committee, told supporters of Marine Corps Air Station Cherry Point, N.C., last week that he opposes conducting a new round of base closures in the near future. “I don’t think you are going to see a BRAC anytime soon. We haven’t paid for the last one …

Prospects Remain Uncertain for Senate to Debate Authorization Bill Next Month

  • August 10, 2014
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Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) has included the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill on his to-do list for September, but the chamber’s busy schedule next month may force it to postpone debate on the legislation. Given the limited floor time available, the number of amendments filed on the annual defense policy bill could dictate when the Senate takes it up. So far 141 amendments have been filed, but the number almost certainly will rise before the bill goes to the floor, reported CQ …

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