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Posts Tagged ‘defense budget’

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 …

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 …

Veterans Push Back at Talk of Closing Commissaries

  • December 2, 2013
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Veterans and active duty service members at Fort Bragg and the neighboring community of Fayetteville, N.C., say commissaries provide a valuable benefit and would be greatly missed, a possibility raised by the recent news that top Pentagon officials have asked the Defense Commissary Agency to create a plan to close all stateside commissaries. Mark Erskine, commander of American Legion Post 230 and an Army veteran on 100 percent disability, cannot imagine losing the stores where he buys his food and basic household supplies …

RAND Study Examines Benefits of Divesting DOD Schools

  • December 2, 2013
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The RAND Corp. is looking at the costs and benefits of operating DOD schools for military dependents in the continental United States, the latest study to focus on a potential divestiture that could help the military stretch its shrinking budget dollars. The study, which is costing the Pentagon $905,000, will review 60 schools at 15 installations that enroll about 23,000 schoolchildren, reported Stars and Stripes. The review will compare the performance of DOD schools with nearby public schools. It will not look at overseas schools operated by the DOD Education Activity …

Ancillary Support Programs to Be Eliminated at Air Force Facilities, Welsh Says

  • December 2, 2013
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Nonessential support services that contribute to the quality-of-life for airmen and their families but do not support the Air Force’s primary mission can be expected to succumb to the budget knife, Chief of Staff Gen. Mark Welsh said last week. Welsh cited several examples of facilities that would be cut, including golf courses, bowling alleys, auto hobby shops and others that are not self-supporting. “These things have made our way of life a lot of fun for families and military members, but we cannot afford them anymore …

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 …

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