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In response to a surprise proposal from the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee to revamp DOD’s plan to relocate 8,600 Marines from Okinawa to Guam, the department reaffirmed its commitment to carrying out its “longstanding agreements” with Japan. “These agreements are good for the people of Okinawa, Japan as a whole, and the U.S.-Japan alliance …READ MORE
The Pentagon would be required to give Congress 90 days notice before realigning an installation that results in reducing the number of military personnel by more than 1,000, under an amendment adopted by the House Armed Services Committee during its markup of the fiscal 2012 defense authorization bill. The committee approved the authorization bill Thursday. It is expected to be debated on the House floor later this month …READ MORE
Thursday’s hearing intended to explore the differences between competing proposals for slashing thousands of unneeded federal properties via a civilian BRAC commission was free of tension, allowing lawmakers to focus on the issues critical to the success of a new mechanism for consolidating the government’s real estate holdings. The two bills discussed by the Economic Development, Public Buildings and Emergency Management Subcommittee of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee were introduced last week …READ MORE
All service members leaving the military would be provided broad jobs skills training, under a bill introduced Wednesday by Sen. Patty Murray, chairman of the Senate Veterans Affairs Committee. The measure is intended to address the high unemployment rate, more than 27 percent, among veterans from the ages of 20 to 24 …READ MORE
Stakeholders representing defense communities, DOD, Congress and the private sector on Monday explored strategies for advancing community-military partnerships at ADC’s Defense Policy Forum, highlighting the obstacles to moving ahead while outlining a broad plan to promote the use of such partnerships. With garrison commanders facing shrinking budgets for installation support, analysts consider intergovernmental services agreements between installations and local entities one way for the military to cut spending …READ MORE
The defense and military construction and veterans affairs appropriations bills would be largely shielded from budget cuts in fiscal 2012 under the draft spending allocations unveiled by the House Appropriations Committee. Spending on defense programs would rise 3.3 percent to $530.0 billion compared to funding in the current year …READ MORE
Sens. Carl Levin, John McCain and Jim Webb Wednesday called for a major revision of the plan to shift 8,000-plus Marines from Okinawa that would reduce the impact on Guam and eliminate the need for Japan to build a replacement for Marine Corps Air Station Futenma. “Much has changed since the U.S.-Japan Roadmap for Realignment Implementation agreement was signed in 2006 …READ MORE