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Posts Tagged ‘defense authorization bill’

BRAC Not out of the Question in Future, Wittman Says

  • June 5, 2014
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The House Armed Services Committee’s rejection over the past three years of the Pentagon’s request for additional base closures may not be permanent, according to the chair of the panel’s readiness subcommittee. “We’re not saying never do a BRAC,” Rep. Rob Wittman (R-Va.) said Wednesday during the keynote lunch at the Defense Communities National Summit. But DOD should wait to conduct a new round until it first has taken a look at its long-term strategic and force structure needs. “I believe we have to take this in the proper sequence,” Wittman said …

BRAC ‘Conversation Has Begun,’ Conger Tells Summit

  • June 4, 2014
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Despite painting a bleak future for military construction and facilities sustainment funding, the Pentagon’s top installations official on Wednesday expressed some optimism regarding the timeline for a new base closure round. Congress is on a course to dismiss the Obama administration’s BRAC request for a third straight year, but some indications have emerged that lawmakers’ rejection can eventually be overcome. One hopeful sign is a provision in the House version of the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill calling for a comprehensive assessment of the need for additional base closures and realignments …

House Spending Bill Would Allow Air Force to Eliminate A-10s

  • June 2, 2014
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The fiscal 2015 spending bill approved Friday by the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee would allow the Air Force to retire its fleet of A-10 close air support aircraft, even while rejecting many of DOD’s austerity measures intended to cope with next year’s statutory spending cap. The Air Force’s plan to retire its fleet of 283 A-10 Warthogs, designed to save $4.2 billion over five years, is overturned in the defense authorization bills advanced by the House and the Senate Armed Services Committee. Last week’s move adds to the uncertainty over the A-10 for the time being …

Senate Panel Maintains Freeze on Guam Buildup Funding

  • June 1, 2014
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The fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill approved last month by the Senate Armed Services Committee would extend the ban on the use of U.S. or Japanese funds for facilities on Guam needed to accommodate the arrival of Marine Corps forces from Okinawa until the Defense Department completes a master plan for construction needed to support the buildup. “The bill approved by the committee makes the hard choices necessary to preserve our military readiness and uphold our obligations to our men and women in uniform and their families in a difficult fiscal environment …

Legislative Solution to Save Ft. Bragg Airlift Wing Remains Alive

  • June 1, 2014
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Supporters of the 440th Airlift Wing, an Air Force Reserve unit based at Fort Bragg’s Pope Field, received some positive news after language to suspend the unit’s deactivation was added to the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill approved by the Senate Armed Services Committee. North Carolina Sen. Kay Hagan (D) introduced the amendment last month in response to the Air Force’s FY 2015 budget request, which calls for retiring the 440th’s 12 C-130H Hercules cargo aircraft. Hagan’s amendment would halt all C-130H and C-130J aircraft transfers until 60 days after the Air Force issues a report outlining a justification of its decision …

Out-of-Pocket Costs Likely to Rise for Military Families

  • May 29, 2014
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The belt-tightening measures proposed by the Pentagon were hardly embraced in the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bills crafted by the House and the Senate Armed Services Committee over the past several weeks, but service members and their families likely will face reduced compensation levels after the annual defense policy bill is enacted. The federal subsidy for military commissaries is largely protected, with the Senate ignoring DOD’s request to trim the direct subsidy by $200 million in FY 2015. The House, however, called for reducing the federal contribution by $100 million …

Budget Reality Makes BRAC Urgent, Former DOD Official Says

  • May 28, 2014
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With the Pentagon’s authority to pare down its excess infrastructure limited, perhaps officials could jump start the process by following the formula used in the 1980s when the department was similarly stymied from closing bases, according to an op-ed published in Defense News. To break the logjam, Lawrence Korb, the senior DOD official in charge of installations, and then-Sen. Barry Goldwater (R-Ariz.), chairman of the Senate Armed Services Committee, agreed in 1985 that DOD would submit a list of bases it wanted to close to the committee …

Amendment to Policy Bill Would Bar DOD from Assessing Climate Change

  • May 28, 2014
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The Pentagon would be prohibited from assessing climate change, under an amendment to the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill that House lawmakers approved last week. The language, sponsored by Rep. David McKinley (R-W.Va.), passed on a near party-line vote. “This amendment will prohibit the costs of the president’s climate change policies being forced on the Department of Defense by the Obama administration,” McKinley wrote House colleagues …

House, Senate Panel Call for Commission on Army Force Structure

  • May 26, 2014
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An independent commission would assess the proper end strength of the Army and mix between its active and reserve components, under separate versions of the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill approved last week by the House and the Senate Armed Services Committee. A bipartisan amendment approved by the House would require the commission to explore — in addition to the Army’s size and mix — missions, force generation policies and how the structure should be modified to best fulfill mission requirements in a manner consistent with available resources …

Committee Hopes for Budget Deal that Lifts Defense Spending Caps

  • May 26, 2014
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Congress should find a bipartisan solution that relaxes the stringent spending caps on the Pentagon without increasing the deficit, according to the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill approved last week by the Senate Armed Services Committee. The measure expresses the sense of the Senate that sequestration is having an adverse impact on the defense budget, according to a summary of the legislation provided by the committee. The bill text and committee report have not yet been released. The bill includes a number of provisions affecting installation policy, starting with language making clear that it is not authorizing a future BRAC round …

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