Defense Legislative Season in Full Swing
This week is a busy week – the House of Representatives will be considering its version of the FY14 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), H.R 1960, on the floor. Meanwhile, the Senate Armed Services Committee will be marking its version S.1304 tomorrow.
The House Armed Services committee passed H.R. 1960 last week, recommending an overall discretionary and mandatory authorization of $638.4 billion in fiscal year 2014. The FY14 NDAA authorizes $552.1 billion in spending for national defense and an additional $85.8 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations, $5 billion more than the President requested. This is consistent with the levels authorized in the FY13 NDAA for the base budget and $2.7 billion less for war spending. The authorization exceeds the defense budget caps set under sequestration by $52 billion.
NGAUS is happy to report that so far in the NDAA process, things are working out pretty well for the Guard. This year, the NGAUS legislative team drafted a variety of legislative proposals based off of our resolutions and strategic goals. So far, a large number of those proposals have been included in the House NDAA
- Preserve the Capabilities of the National Guard as an Operational Force
- Concurrent fielding of equipment for the Army National Guard and Air National Guard
- C-130 modernization, propulsion upgrades and planning for recapitalization
- Ensure Army National Guard regular deployments
- Abrams Tanks Upgrades
- Plans and guidance on Air National Guard MQ-1 and MQ-9 recapitalization
- Codifying the National Guard State Partnership Program
- Inclusion of the National Guard in mission analysis for cyber operation
- Funding for the National Guard and Reserve Equipment Account (NGREA)
- Funding embedded mental health
- Funds for counter drug activities
- Reporting and inclusion of fully burdened life cycle costs
- Honoring certain members of the reserve component as veterans
As the Senate Armed Services Committee moves tomorrow to mark-up its version of the NDAA, NGAUS continues to fight to ensure these important provisions are included. Likewise, we will continue to fight to include other important Guard matters as the House moves towards full floor consideration later this week.
You can read a full analysis of H.R. 1960 here.