DOD Releases Fiscal 2012 Budget Proposal
(Source: US Department of Defense; issued Feb. 14, 2011)
President Barack Obama today sent to Congress a proposed defense budget of $671 billion for fiscal 2012. The request for the Department of Defense (DoD) includes $553 billion in discretionary budget authority to fund base defense programs and $118 billion to support overseas contingency operations (OCO), primarily in Afghanistan and Iraq.

The fiscal 2012 budget continues the DoD reform agenda, seeking additional efficiencies across the entire defense enterprise, while also strengthening our national security capability.

“This budget represents a reasonable, responsible and sustainable level of funding, the minimum level of defense spending that is necessary, given the security challenges we are facing around the globe,” said Defense Secretary Robert Gates.

The $553 billion for the base budget provides funding to take care of our people, which is our highest priority, and also provides substantial funding to build capability for possible future conflicts. The OCO portion totals $117.8 billion, $41.5 billion below the fiscal 2011 request of $159.3 billion. The proposal reflects the planned withdrawal of troops from Iraq by the end of the first quarter of fiscal 2012 and a modest decline in funding for Afghanistan operations.

While this budget request seeks continued efficiencies in 2012 and beyond, the absence of an appropriation for fiscal 2011 threatens to cause serious inefficiencies and problems this year. The current continuing resolution, if it remains in effect for the rest of the year, will lead to delays and inefficient, start-and-stop management. It will rob the DoD of the flexibility needed to manage effectively, especially in time of war, and it will not provide the Department with enough resources to maintain training and support while also paying bills for military pay, benefits, and inflation. In short the continuing resolution represents a crisis at our doorstep, and the DoD strongly urges the Congress to pass a defense appropriation bill as part of the overall legislation to fund government activities in fiscal 2011.

Highlights of the proposed DoD budget are outlined in the attached summary and charts .

For more information and to view the entire fiscal 2012 budget proposal, please visit and download the “FY 2012 Budget Request Overview Book.”

Budget-related transcripts can also be viewed at . (ends)

Gates: Defense Needs $540 Billion for Fiscal ’11
(Source: US Department of Defense; issued Feb. 14, 2011)
WASHINGTON --- Congress must provide $540 billion to the Defense Department for fiscal 2011 or the department will be in danger of not being able to perform its mission, Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates said here today.

Gates also said he will look at “all legal options” to shut down the extra engine for the joint strike fighter –- calling it a waste of $3 billion.

Gates made the statements during his presentation of the fiscal 2012 defense budget request at the Pentagon. President Barack Obama is asking for a base budget of $553 billion and an overseas contingency operations request of $117.8 billion.

But what Gates has called the crisis on his doorstep -– the possibility that DOD will operate through the remainder of fiscal 2011 on a continuing resolution -– drew sharp remarks from the secretary.

“Exactly a year ago, the president requested $549 billion to operate the Department of Defense during fiscal year 2011,” Gates said. “If forced to operate under a full-year continuing resolution, the department would only receive about $526 billion.”

This reduction of $23 billion is magnified because it comes five months into the fiscal year, he said.

“I raise this point today because I am concerned that the debate over the defense budget in recent days and weeks is becoming increasingly distant from the strategic and operational reality -- distant, in other words, from the real world,” he said. “In fact, suggestions to cut defense by this or that large number have largely become exercises in simple math –- divorced from serious considerations of capabilities, risk, and the level of resources needed to protect this country’s security and vital national interests around the world.”

Gates said he understands the department will not get the $549 billion asked for last year. “It is my judgment that the Department of Defense needs an appropriation of at least $540 billion for fiscal year 2011 for the U.S. military to properly carry out its mission, maintain readiness and prepare for the future,” he said.

Gates repeatedly and consistently has called for an end to the joint strike fighter extra engine program. Obama and the military chiefs have agreed with the secretary, and in a statement released May 28, Obama vowed to veto any legislation that provides for the extra engine.

“We consider it an unnecessary and extravagant expense, particularly during this period of fiscal contraction,” Gates said today.

The secretary said that because Congress has provided “ambiguous guidance” on the engine, he has funded the program on a month-to-month basis, hoping the Congress would resolve the matter.

“However, that also means that the American taxpayers are spending $28 million a month for an excess and unjustified program that is slated for termination,” the secretary said. “The president, the military services and I continue to oppose this extra engine and, when the current continuing resolution expires, I will look at all available legal options to close down this program.

“It would be a waste of nearly $3 billion in a time of economic distress, and the money is needed for higher priority defense efforts,” he added. (ends)
Budget Balances Military Needs with Fiscal Restraint, Hale Says
(Source: US Department of Defense; issued Feb. 14, 2011)
WASHINGTON --- The Defense Department’s $671 billion fiscal 2012 budget is a responsible funding request that balances the needs of the military with efforts to control federal spending, the department’s comptroller said today.

“We in the department need to be part of the deficit reduction plan,” Robert F. Hale said during a Pentagon news briefing to outline the budget. “This is a responsible budget that meets our national security needs and is sustainable.”

Under the proposal to Congress, total defense spending would decrease 6.6 percent, but the base budget -- all funding except overseas contingency operations -- would increase 0.7 percent to $553 billion.

Air Force Lt. Gen. Larry O. Spencer, director of force structure, resources and assessment for the Joint Staff, said the budget would not hurt military readiness. Spencer accompanied Hale to the briefing in place of Navy Adm. Mike Mullen, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, who is traveling.

“This budget ensures that our American military is ready to respond when the nation calls,” he said.

The budget allows the department to “consider the full spectrum” of global challenges, Hale noted, from the proliferation of weapons of mass destruction to terrorism to protecting free trade.

The budget freezes civilian cost-of-living raises, but gives service members a 1.6 percent increase to match the Labor Department’s annual Employment Cost Index.

The budget gives $8.3 billion to family support programs, including child care for more than 200,000 school-age children and funding of spousal employment programs. It also will allow for 15 modernization projects at department schools for service members’ children.

Department officials plan to spend $52.5 billion on health care, with increases to treating traumatic brain injuries and psychological health, as well as opening a new hospital on Fort Bliss, Texas.

Nearly $2 billion will be spent on construction, including 41 barracks, six fitness centers, four chapels and four child care centers.

For war funding, the budget provides about $85 billion to maintain readiness and training, partly due to the money saved from the drawdown in Iraq. It increases funding in intelligence, surveillance and reconnaissance capabilities to $4.8 billion, which includes procurement of more unmanned aircraft.

To improve weapons modernization, the budget would:
-- Extend procurement of the F/A-18 aircraft through 2014;
-- Stabilize shipbuilding with an 11-ship program;
-- Procure a new long-range strike bomber with unmanned capability for the Air Force;
-- Fund $.09 billion for the KC-X Tanker;
-- Give $1 billion to the SSBN nuclear submarine development;
-- Provide $10.7 billion to ballistic missile defense; and
-- give $12.2 billion, a 2 percent increase, for science and technology research.

The budget reinvests $100 billion of $178 billion found in Defense Secretary Robert M. Gates' “Efficiencies Initiative,” with the remainder taken as reductions from “top line” costs, such as $13 billion by freezing civilian billets, $12 billion with a two-year civilian pay freeze, $2.3 billion by closing Joint Forces Command and $8 billion in health care reforms.

As part of those initiatives, the Army will save $29.5 billion by reducing recruiting and retention incentives, terminating the Future Combat Systems and surface-launched advanced medium-range air-to-air missile, as well as reducing construction and manning and support processes.

The Navy and Marine Corps found $35 billion in savings by terminating the Corps’ Expeditionary Fighting Vehicle, using multiyear procurement contracts for new ships and aircraft, and reducing energy consumption.

The Air Force will reinvest $33.3 billion through reorganizations and consolidation; reducing, terminating and streamlining processes; as well as cutting information technology costs.

The budget decreases overseas contingency operations spending from $159 billion in the current year to $118 billion next year. Of that, $66.6 billion would go to operations, including $12.8 billion to train and equip the Afghan army and police. Nearly $12 billion would be for equipment reset costs.

Much of the decrease in the overseas budget is due to the drawdown of U.S. troops from Iraq, which is to be completed by the end of December. Expenditures in Iraq dropped from $46 billion in the current budget, which ends Sept. 30, to $11 billion to complete the transition to State Department operations in Iraq.

The department’s four-year budget plan calls for a 1 percent increase in the base budget in fiscal 2013, followed by 0.5 percent in 2014, and a flat budget in fiscal 2015 and 2016.


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