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Posts Tagged ‘defense budget’

Hurdle in Senate over Appropriations Could Result in Stopgap for FY’15

  • June 22, 2014
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The roadblock the Senate encountered last week as it attempted to debate a package of three domestic spending bills raises the possibility that Congress will resort to a continuing resolution to fund the government at the start of the new fiscal year. While Senate leaders still have an opportunity to break the impasse over amendments that prompted Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) to pull the fiscal 2015 “minibus” from the floor, if the chamber fails to clear any spending measures, a continuing resolution would be needed for all 12 of the annual spending bills …

Optimism over Spending Bills Dims after Senate Dispute

  • June 19, 2014
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Apparent momentum in Congress to pass individual spending bills through regular order took a wrong turn Thursday after the Senate suspended debate on a package of three spending bills after the two parties failed to reach agreement on dealing with amendments. Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) pulled the fiscal 2015 “minibus” — made up of the Commerce-Justice-Science, Transportation-HUD and Agriculture measures — from the Senate floor after Republicans scoffed at Reid’s insistence on a 60-vote threshold to pass amendments …

House Votes to Oppose BRAC, Preserve A-10 Fleet

  • June 19, 2014
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In two votes that succinctly summarize the challenge the Pentagon faces in planning for mandated budget cuts, House lawmakers voted Thursday night to bar DOD from spending any funds to plan for or carry out another BRAC round, and to prevent it from implementing the Air Force’s proposal to retire its fleet of A-10 close air support aircraft. The two votes came during House debate of the fiscal 2015 defense spending bill. Final passage of the bill is expected today …

Despite Long Odds, BRAC Still Worth Fighting For, James Says

  • June 18, 2014
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Air Force Secretary Deborah Lee James is pessimistic about the prospect that Congress will approve the Pentagon’s request for a new BRAC round in 2017, but believes DOD will continue trying to persuade lawmakers of its importance at a time when it is coping with stringent spending caps. “As a person who came out of business, the last things a corporation would do is spend money on facilities that are no longer needed,” James told defense reporters Wednesday. “You would never, never, never run a business this way. I realize government is not a business. But there are certain principles [that] make good common sense …

White House Opposes Defense Spending Bill over BRAC, Compensation Reform

  • June 17, 2014
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The White House on Tuesday said it “strongly opposes” House passage of the fiscal 2015 defense spending bill over its failure to include a variety of cost-saving reforms, but fell short of issuing a veto threat. “Without congressional support for meaningful compensation reforms and other cost-saving measures, force structure changes, and flexibility to manage weapon systems and infrastructure, there is an increased risk to the department’s ability to implement the president’s defense strategy, which will contribute to a military that will be less capable of responding effectively to future challenges …

Emboldened Tea Party Republicans Could Slow Progress on Spending Bills

  • June 15, 2014
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With Majority Whip Rep. Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.) the favorite to replace Rep. Eric Cantor (R-Va.) as House majority leader following his stunning primary defeat last week, House leadership’s goal of passing all 12 individual spending bills before the new fiscal year begins seemingly will remain on track. McCarthy, an establishment Republican, supported the December budget deal relaxing Budget Control Act spending caps for fiscal 2014 and 2015 and, as result, favors the overall spending levels reflected in next year’s appropriations bills over the option of a continuing resolution …

Consideration of Milcon Spending Bill Pushed Back in Senate

  • June 12, 2014
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The fiscal 2015 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs spending measure will not be among the first appropriations bills that go to the Senate floor, the chamber’s Appropriations Committee announced this week. Instead, a “minibus” of three other spending bills — Commerce, Justice and Science; Transportation-HUD; and Agriculture — will go to the Senate floor next week, delaying debate of the milcon bill until later in June or July, reported CQ. The House passed its milcon spending bill, H.R. 4486, on April 30 …

Appropriators Envision Larger Role for Energy Conservation Program

  • June 12, 2014
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DOD’s Energy Conservation Investment Program (ECIP) should shift from an initiative focused on small, rapid-payback projects to one that funds larger energy security and renewable energy projects, according to the report from the Senate Appropriations Committee accompanying the fiscal 2015 military construction and veterans affairs spending bill. “The committee urges DOD and the services to compete projects that will produce significant ‘game-changing’ improvements to reduce carbon emissions, energy consumption and energy costs, as well as projects to enhance installation energy security,” the report states …

Logistics Agency to ‘Right-Size’ Its Infrastructure

  • June 12, 2014
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By the end fiscal year 2019, the Defense Logistics Agency will have less people, inventory and infrastructure, Navy Vice Adm. Mark Harnitchek, the agency’s director, told reporters Thursday. The downsizing comes as the military continues to draw down from overseas operations, reports American Forces Press Service. As the agency curtails its inventory, it will require a smaller amount of infrastructure to manage it …

Cantor Defeat Likely a Setback for Defense Industry

  • June 11, 2014
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Tuesday’s stunning primary defeat of House Majority Leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.) removes the defense industry’s most reliable supporter from the chamber’s leadership, according to experts. More significantly for defense communities, it raises the chances that an emboldened tea party succeeds in pushing for additional spending reductions or, at a minimum, quashes any future budget deals from reversing sequestration cuts beyond fiscal 2015 …

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