DoD

March 29, 2013

DOD requires more base closings, official says

WASHINGTON (AFNS) — The Defense Department possesses more real estate than it needs and is looking to close additional bases and installations in the United States and abroad, a senior DOD official told a House panel March 14.

Air Force leaders agree, according to Kathleen I. Ferguson, acting assistant secretary of the Air Force for installations, environment and logistics.

“While we have no recent excess infrastructure capacity analysis from which to draw, our capacity analysis from 2004 suggested that 24 percent of Air Force basing infrastructure was excess to our mission needs,” Ferguson said.

Since the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure, which brought very few changes to the Air Force and only 3.4 percent reductions to the entire DOD, the Air Force has reduced its force structure by more than 500 aircraft and active-duty end strength by nearly 8 percent, Ferguson said.

“So, intuitively we know that we still have excess infrastructure, while we spend considerable time optimizing the use of our facilities and carefully and frugally managing those facilities we know to be excess,” Ferguson said.

Based on these facts, which were mirrored in the other services, another round of base realignments and closings should be an essential part of any overall strategy for reshaping the military, John Conger, the acting deputy undersecretary of defense for installations and environment, told the House Armed Services Committee in prepared testimony.

“Force structure is declining relative to that which existed in 2005, thereby continuing to add to aggregate excess capacity,” Conger said, noting that the U.S. Army is reducing its active-duty end strength from 570,000 to 490,000 by 2020, and the Marine Corps from about 202,000 to 182,000.

“If we assume our bases were either appropriately loaded or were carrying excess capacity, these force reductions will increase that surplus,” he said.

In last year’s budget request, the Pentagon asked Congress for permission to initiate two more rounds of base closings under BRAC. Conger said the last round of BRAC closings, in 2005, produced $4 billion in annual recurring savings.

By law, under the BRAC process, an independent commission submits to Congress a list of military installations it believes should be closed or realigned, with lawmakers and the president then required to approve or reject the recommendations without change.

The Defense Department is examining further reductions in U.S. military bases in Europe, where Conger said more than 100 sites have already been returned to host governments since 2003, and where no authority from Congress is required for recommending additional closures.

“By the end of this year, we plan to conclude with a fully vetted list of options from which the Secretary (of Defense) can make strategic decisions for eliminating excess, preserving and even enhancing our ability to meet strategic and operational commitments,” Conger said in his prepared remarks.

The U.S. Army already plans to close 33 sites in Europe associated with the decision to reduce brigade combat teams based on the continent.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 

The new fight: Writing cyber into the science of war

Every year, the Aspen Security Forum brings together the top minds in defense, intelligence and homeland security. This year, more than ever, the conversation is turning to cybersecurity – protecting computer networks and everything attached to them. Cyber is constantly changing the way conflicts and combat unfold. Here, former U.S. Navy Rear Adm. William Leigher offers insights...
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photo/Osakabe Yasuo)

Need help? Trust your ‘Shirt’

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Arizona — When young Airmen need help or are looking for guidance, a good place to start is with a senior NCO. Making it into the top 3 percent in the U.S. Air Force is a major accomplishment. Alt...
 
 

Local Briefs July 31, 2015

Sunset Horseback Ride August 8, 4 – 8 p.m. – Outdoor Rec Saddle up and enjoy a 2-hour sunset horseback ride through the Saguaro National Park.. Final deadline for sign-ups is July 31. Minimum age: 18. Cost of $25/person. Call 228-3736 for more information. White water rafting and camping Aug. 20 – 24 – Grand...
 

 
(Courtesy Photo)

A Q&A with Master Sgt. Jaime Lewis

The men and women of the 12th Air Force (Air Forces Southern) welcomed a new First Sgt. in May. Master Sgt. Jaime M. Lewis, began his career in 2000 as an Aerial Porter, where he performed duties such as passenger services, car...
 
 
(U.S. Air Force photo/ Master Sgt. Jeffrey Allen)

Relationship building by means of the F-16

  America’s stars and stripes and Arizona’s lone copper star always wave proudly at the Arizona Air National Guard’s 162nd Wing. But it’s the adjacent flags of coalition-partners – from the pacific island-nat...
 
 

Military life: Separated, but not alone

  MOUNTAIN HOME AIR FORCE BASE, Idaho — As the dawn broke out over the mountains, I woke up to the sun peeping through my window. Once I got up I went straight to the kitchen to make my family breakfast yet in the back of my mind, all I could think about is how am I...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <s> <strike> <strong>