Congress and the Budget
Congress eyes protecting military pay ahead of government shutdown
Lawmakers are prepping plans to guarantee paychecks for troops and in case of a government shutdown next month, arguing that jeopardizing military family finances could hurt national security.
Government shutdown would not affect VA medical care and most benefits, secretary says
Medical care and burials at its cemeteries would continue at the Department of Veterans Affairs in the event of a government shutdown, as would benefits such as disability compensation, pensions, education and housing assistance, VA Secretary Denis McDonough said Sept. 22.
Half of DOD civilians would get furloughed in a shutdown, plans show
The Biden administration is planning to take a novel approach at some agencies.
Pentagon says Ukraine training, weapons shipments will continue despite any government shutdown
The Pentagon said this week that its war aid to Ukraine will continue if Congress is unable to pass defense spending in the coming days and avert a shutdown of the federal government at the end of the month.
Biden tells Zelenskyy that US will send Ukraine ATACMS long-range missiles
Some in Washington had resisted supplying the weapons system, known as “attack-ems,” out of fear that it would widen the war with Russia.
Ukraine targets a key Crimea city a day after striking Russia fleet HQ
Ukraine on Sept. 23 launched another missile attack on Sevastopol on the occupied Crimean Peninsula, a Russian-installed official said.
GAO blasts contractor-led F-35 maintenance as costly, slow
A lack of spare parts and technical data, poor training of maintainers, and a lagging effort to expand repair depots are dragging down the U.S. military’s ability to keep the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter in the air, a government watchdog said in a report released Sept. 21.
Taiwan moves closer to acquiring 160 Turkish-made Jackal drones
Taiwanese company GEOSAT Aerospace and Technology has inked an agreement with British firm Flyby Technology that paves the way for the purchase, technology transfer and production of 160 Turkish-made Jackal drones.
Poland fortifies its defenses with US backed deals
Poland has a few major industry headlines as it beefs up its defenses amid the ongoing war between Russia and Ukraine.
Boeing is using Fortnite’s game engine to upgrade B-52s
Will this “hyper-realistic” modeling tool help get the program a Victory Royale?
US approves $500 million sale for Saudi Arabia’s combat vehicle upkeep
The U.S. State Department has approved a possible sale to replenish Saudi Arabia’s stocks of spare and repair parts for the countryís fleet of combat vehicles, at an estimated price tag of $500 million.
Germany, France eye new partners for next-gen tank in 2024
The defense ministers of France and Germany expect to begin negotiations for their next-generation tank project with industry leaders KNDS and Rheinmetall in 2024, after which other European countries could join the initiative.
Soldiers’ attempt to sue Army for negligence may end before it begins
The complaints, and any future lawsuits that would result from them, hinge on combating an obscure legal doctrine that first entered the legal fray in 1950, altering the basic legal rights of service members.
Navy researchers test robot dogs for ship maintenance
Research teams are experimenting with robot “dogs” – testing their ability to maneuver around Navy ships and take on mundane maintenance tasks.
Space Force uniform enters last stage of testing before production
More than 100 Guardians across the globe have started wearing the Space Force’s prototype service dress uniform three times per week as part of “wear testing” — the final stage before the uniform is produced and rolled out to Guardians everywhere in 2025.
Back to work! VA sets a deadline for workers to return to the office.
The federal union representing VA workers insists that teleworking is a boon for recruiting, morale and productivity.
VA to recoup nearly $10 million in mistaken bonuses to senior staffers
The money was designed to help retain employees with in-demand skills but was awarded improperly to 170 senior officials.
Almost 1.5 million vets don’t have enough to eat and many aren’t seeking help, study finds
Roughly 70 percent of veterans older than 70 who do not have enough to eat are not using government food assistance programs, according to a research report released this week.
More burial and funeral costs can now be covered by veterans benefits
The Department of Veterans Affairs is expanding benefits to help pay for veterans’ end-of-life expenses, the department announced Sept. 22.