Sequestration Would Jeopardize Family Programs, McHugh Says

Deeper cuts to the defense budget than the $450 billion already slated to occur likely would hit military family programs severely, Army Secretary John McHugh said Wednesday.

“Those programs would be at great risk of massive cuts, if not outright elimination,” McHugh told reporters, according to the Watertown Daily Times.

The initial round of DOD spending cuts, totaling $450 billion over the next decade, would largely bypass those programs, he said.

At this point it is not clear what family programs would be at risk in the event that automatic spending cuts are triggered, resulting in up to $600 billion in additional cuts from the Pentagon’s budget. One threat is the commissary benefit, which saves families up to 30 percent on groceries.

McHugh also made a veiled reference to the possibility of a future BRAC. After noting that the Army recently finished carrying out its largest base closure round, he pointed out that a smaller Army needs less infrastructure.

“We don’t want to be overstructured. We will have to rationalize our end strength with our facilities,” the secretary said.


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