Navy Not Considering Base Closures to Reach Deficit Reduction Targets

Navy officials are exploring hundreds of scenarios to find ways to reduce spending over the next decade, but are not considering base closures to shrink the service’s budget, Navy Undersecretary Robert Work said last week.

One reason is that the savings from base closures most likely wouldn’t be captured until after the 10-year planning period is over. “We’re really chasing a 10-year target,” Work told Defense News.

In addition, he explained, the Navy was “really aggressive” in the 2005 round of base closures, while the Marine Corps has “an extremely lean infrastructure.”

And in contrast to the Army and Air Force, the Navy is not looking at trimming its civilian workforce any further. The service is attempting to freeze the number of civilians at 2010 levels, according to the story.

Consolidating commands, however, is one tack officials are examining, the Navy’s number two official said.

The Navy, like the other services, is preparing to absorb a range of budget cuts in fiscal 2012 and over the next 10 years to reduce the nation’s debt. Officials are planning on a DOD-wide spending cut approaching $30 billion in FY 2012, Work said, and more than $450 billion for the department through 2021.

“We’re doing what-if drills on ships, aircraft, munitions, force structure, people, every single program in the department,” he said.


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