Now, I became a big fan of the Senate Appropriations Committee since reading Charlie Wilson’s War. I enjoy reading the transcripts of the subcommittee meetings and watching/listening to the webcasts. I hope you do too!.
So, allow me to present the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2012. The webcast is very interesting and it shows how not fun it must have been to get this monster together.
Just a bit of background: Who’s on the subcommittee? And keep in mind, these are some of the most powerful people in Washington DC.
Democratic Subcommittee Members
Senator Daniel Inouye (Chairman) (HI) Senator Patrick Leahy (VT) Senator Tom Harkin (IA) Senator Richard Durbin (IL) Senator Dianne Feinstein (CA) Senator Barbara Mikulski (MD) Senator Herb Kohl (WI) Senator Patty Murray (WA) Senator Tim Johnson (SD) Senator Jack Reed (RI)
Republican Subcommittee Members
Senator Thad Cochran (Ranking) (MS) Senator Mitch McConnell (KY) Senator Richard Shelby (AL) Senator Kay Bailey Hutchison (TX) Senator Lamar Alexander (TN) Senator Susan Collins (ME) Senator Lisa Murkowski (AK) Senator Lindsey Graham (SC) Senator Dan Coats (IN)
So, here’s the Press Release:
appropriations.senate.gov/news.c … 31e55ac730
[quote]President’s Request: $656.8 billion
FY 2012 Appropriations Act: $630.6 billion
The Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2012 provides $630.6 billion in base and overseas contingency operation funding. The base budget appropriation is
$513.0 billion, or a spending freeze at the fiscal year 2011 level. This freeze represents a $25.9 billion reduction from the budget request, consistent with the spending cuts directed by the Budget Control Act of 2011. The defense bill also contains $117.6 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) of the Department of Defense, the same amount requested by the President. In compliance with the earmark moratorium, the Act contains no congressionally directed spending items.[/quote]
Here’s the webcast:
appropriations.senate.gov/webcas … f9541cec00
It takes a bit of work to identify the speakers, but it’s really kind of fun.
But, the work, the really hard stuff is getting through the whole thing:
gpo.gov/fdsys/pkg/CRPT-112sr … srpt77.pdf
[quote]PURPOSE OF THE BILL
This bill makes appropriations for the military functions of the
Department of Defense for the period October 1, 2011, through
September 30, 2012. Functional areas include the pay, allowances,
and support of military personnel, operation and maintenance of
the forces, procurement of equipment and systems, and research,
development, test and evaluation. [/quote]
[quote]Appropriations for foreign military
assistance, military construction, family housing, nuclear
weapons programs, and civil defense are provided in other bills.[/quote]
Now I haven’t read it all as I just saw it up today, but the bonuses for joining the military are not going to be as sweet as they have been seeing that new recruits and re-ups are at or above 100% for next year.
Troops in Iraq and Afghanistan will be coming home, some by the end of this year and some by Sept 2012.
[quote]The full funding includes adjustments for the drawdown of
10,000 troops from Afghanistan by December 2011, and an additional 23,000
withdrawn by the end of September 2012.[/quote]
The National Guard and Reserve are getting 500 million clams. That’s kind of worrisome. I don’t think it’s all for flood prevention.
[quote]The bill adds $500 million in the National Guard and Reserve Equipment Account
to ensure that our Reserve Components are prepared for their national defense and
homeland security missions.[/quote]
Stuff getting money or more than they asked for include:[quote]
The following are examples of high-priority programs supported or increased by the bill:
Aircraft – The bill fully funds the request for Army Chinook and Apache
helicopters; Navy P-8A Poseidon, EA-18G, and F/A-18 aircraft; Air Force Joint
Cargo Aircraft; and Air Force and Marine Corps V-22s. Funds are added for an
additional six Army Black Hawk helicopters, and $120 million is added for
efficient production of Air Force
Now the fun part here is to track down where these things are built, as in whose congressional district is it?
and this gem:[quote]
Investing in Next-Generation Weapons Systems – The bill fully funds advanced
systems including development of the Air Force Next Generation Bomber and the
Prompt Global Strike program
; fully funds the Navy Shipbuilding and Conversion
request; and production of satellites including the Advanced EHF, Space Based
Infrared System, Global Positioning System III, and the Wideband Global
Satellite.[/quote] Ruh roh Raggy! :scooby:
And what’s getting cut, totally eliminated or rescinded:[quote]
The following are examples of some of the bill’s major reductions:
Joint Strike Fighter – Freezes production at FY 2011 levels for FY 2012 and
reduces production ramp in FY 2013 to minimize concurrency in test and
production in order to avoid costly modification bills in the future.
Joint Light Tactical Vehicle – Terminates the program based on excessive cost
growth, unstable requirements, and new alternatives. Savings from this program
help support Army and Marine Corps efforts to recapitalize and competitively
upgrade HMMWV fleets.
Ground Combat Vehicle – Proposes reductions to the Army Ground Combat
Vehicle due to schedule delays and changes to the acquisition strategy.
Defense Weather Satellite System (DWSS) – Directs the cancellation of DWSS
and provides funds for a new competitive development program.
Mobile Landing Platform – Eliminates funding for one ship due to the
congressional acceleration of one ship in fiscal year 2011.[/quote]
And again, to hear the Senator plea for the Hummers and the JSFs on the webcast makes me really want to know where they are built.
and FYI, a Mobile landing platform is an aircraft carrier.
Anyway…this is what I do in my spare time.
Have at it!