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Posts Tagged ‘deficit reduction’

McCain Pledges to Shield A-10s from Air Force’s Retirement Plans

  • March 9, 2015
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Sen. John McCain on Friday vowed to reverse the Air Force’s recent decision to place nine A-10 close air support aircraft based at Davis-Monthan AFB in Tucson into backup status. Officials last year proposed retiring the entire fleet of nearly 300 A-10s to save about $4 billion. Lawmakers rejected that plan in the fiscal 2015 defense authorization bill but included language permitting the Air Force to place up to 36 A-10s this fiscal year into backup status, reported the Arizona Daily Star. “That was a compromise that was made last year in response to the Air Force’s misguided attempt to retire all the A-10s …

Budget Caps Threaten Activity at Fort Hood, Support Group Official Says

  • March 8, 2015
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If Congress fails to provide the Pentagon relief from the Budget Control Act spending caps, Fort Hood will experience “death by a thousand cuts,” the head of the post’s local support group told the Copperas Cove Economic Development Corp. last week. “Fort Hood is an enduring, capable installation,” said Bill Parry, executive director of the Heart of Texas Defense Alliance. “The question is, at what level? …

OEA Providing Assistance to Communities Coping with Defense Industry Cutbacks

  • March 8, 2015
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Communities responding to the cancellation of a defense contract or a major reduction in DOD spending that results in a significant economic impact can apply to DOD’s Office of Economic Adjustment for planning assistance to carry out community adjustment and economic diversification activities, according to an announcement scheduled to be published Monday in the Federal Register. To be eligible, state or local governments, or regional entities need to have experienced one of the following circumstances: a publicly announced planned major reduction in DOD spending; the cancellation or termination of a DOD contract; or the failure to proceed with an approved major weapons system program …

Strong Push by Defense Hawks Could Force Compromise over Raising Budget Caps

  • March 6, 2015
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The lack of a consensus within the Republican Party over whether to stick with or adjust the statutory spending caps is placing heightened attention on the fiscal 2016 budget resolution each chamber is required to draft. With markups of the resolutions by the House and Senate Budget committees only two weeks away, battle lines between defense hawks and fiscal hawks in the party are becoming increasingly clear. Defense hawks are insisting the Obama administration’s $534 billion base DOD budget proposal for FY 2016 is not high enough — even though it exceeds the Budget Control Act cap by $35 billion — while fiscal conservatives favor sticking with the spending limits as the best way to trim the deficit. Several defense experts interviewed by Politico underscored the heightened support among Republicans for raising the defense cap, but said at this point it’s still too soon to say how congressional leaders will settle on topline spending levels …

Appropriations Panel Tells Carter to Live within the Spending Cap

  • March 4, 2015
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Forcing the Defense Department to live within the statutory budget caps would be detrimental to the nation’s security, new Defense Secretary Ashton Carter told the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee on Wednesday, but the panel delivered the sobering message that the spending limits very likely are here to stay. “I completely agree that the BCA [Budget Control Act] needs to be modified to avoid dramatic, immediate and long-term negative impacts on our military capabilities,” said Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen. “But unless and until the law is changed, this committee has no choice but to draft our bill to comply with the BCA caps …

Central Louisiana Hopes to Shield Ft. Polk from Troop Cuts a Second Time

  • March 4, 2015
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The people of Central Louisiana put on a strong show of support Tuesday for the listening session for Fort Polk, with a large number of residents lining the streets in Leesville on the way to the meeting site and crowds at two satellite locations participating via live streaming. Speakers emphasized the region’s patriotism and loyalty to the post as Army officials gathered input from Fort Polk’s neighbors before deliberating over the service’s second round of restructuring this decade. The listening sessions that officials are conducting at 30 installations will be used to help the Army determine how to shrink its active-duty end strength from 490,000 to 420,000 by fiscal 2020 …

Missouri Leaders Tout Ft. Leonard Wood’s Assets

  • March 3, 2015
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Dozens of state and local officials — part of a crowd estimated at nearly 2,000 — showed up at a listening session Monday to support Fort Leonard Wood and highlight its strengths as the Army considers how to shrink its active-duty end strength from 490,000 to 420,000 by fiscal 2020. Sen. Claire McCaskill said the post, located in the Missouri Ozarks, has the lowest direct cost of the Army’s Training and Doctrine Command installations. “If we’re talking about saving money, we would want to be utilizing this facility not cutting this facility …

McCain, Reed Back Infrastructure Consolidation

  • March 2, 2015
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In a letter urging the Senate Budget Committee to break the statutory spending cap in its fiscal 2016 budget resolution, the leadership of the Senate Armed Services Committee endorses management reforms “that could reduce or consolidate military headquarters, commands and infrastructure.” The letter from Chairman John McCain (R-Ariz.) and ranking member Jack Reed (D-R.I.) lists multiple initiatives needed to ensure DOD uses its funding more efficiently — including acquisition reform and slowing the rate of growth of military compensation — but it does not mention approving the department’s request for a new BRAC round. Savings from such cost-cutting reforms should be reinvested to provide more funding for the warfighter, they say …

President’s FY’16 Request Falls Short of DOD’s Needs, HASC Republicans Say

  • March 1, 2015
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Funding for national security should be set at $577 billion in fiscal 2016, a level that is $16 billion higher than President Obama’s budget request and $54 billion higher than next year’s mandated spending cap, House Armed Services Committee Chairman Mac Thornberry (R-Texas) on Friday urged the chairman of the chamber’s Budget Committee. In a “views and estimates” letter to House Budget Committee Chairman Tom Price (R-Ga.), Thornberry points to “a wide array of serious, complex threats” facing the nation, including terrorist groups such as the Islamic State, “sophisticated competitors” such as Russia and China, and the new domain of cyber warfare. “If this is not feasible in the first year, the committee recommends, at a minimum, last year’s House-passed budget resolution level of $566 billion for national defense in the base budget for FY16 with restoration to pre-sequestration-level funding in FY17 and out …

Army Brass Learns about Critical Role Fort Jackson Fulfills

  • March 1, 2015
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A crowd of almost 2,000 showed up Thursday in Columbia, S.C., to let the Army know how vital Fort Jackson is to the local economy and to highlight the ways the region has supported the service’s largest training post. The listening session was held to help the Army learn about community support for Fort Jackson, which could lose up to 2,363 soldiers and 708 civilian workers in a second round of restructuring intended to shrink active-duty forces from 490,000 to 420,000 soldiers by fiscal 2020 …

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