Funding to clean up installations closed during past base closure rounds would drop by $32.5 million to $277.5 million in fiscal 2019, under the military construction-Veterans Affairs spending bill the Senate Appropriations Committee approved Thursday. The committee’s recommendation represents a $10 million increase over the administration’s budget request, but a sharp drop from the funding level in the companion bill advancing in the House. The House’s milcon spending bill — which is under consideration by the chamber this week as part of a three-bill “minibus” appropriations package — calls for increasing spending on cleanup and ongoing operations and maintenance at sites closed under BRAC by $12 million to $322 million next year.
Separately, the Senate’s milcon spending bill includes $10 million for identification, mitigation and cleanup across the military to address water contamination from the contaminants PFOA and PFOS. Overall, the measure recommends spending $10.3 billion on military construction and family housing programs in FY 2019, a $228 million jump from the current year. The administration asked for $10.5 billion for milcon programs in its budget request.