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DoD Finally Has a Fiscal 2024 Spending Plan

03-26-24 WR Spending WEBSITE
03-26-24 WR Spending WEBSITE
Washington Report

President Joe Biden on Saturday signed into law six fiscal 2024 spending bills, including one containing $824.5 billion for the Defense Department.

Congress technically missed a deadline of midnight Friday to send the appropriations package to the White House, but still averted a partial shutdown of the federal government.

The Pentagon can now launch the initiatives and procure the key weapons systems it had planned for this year.

For nearly six months, Congress funded the Defense Department at fiscal 2023 levels through a series of stopgap budgets, avoiding a government shutdown but delaying many of the Pentagon's initiatives and procurement plans.

The $824.5 billion is $26.7 billion more than enacted for fiscal 2023 but less than the $842 billion in the fiscal 2024 National Defense Authorization Act.

The amount funds 325,000 Army National Guard soldiers and 105,000 Air Guard airmen.

NGAUS is still going over the details, but initial Guard equipment highlights include $310 million for the Army Guard and $300 million for the Air Guard in the congressionally directed National Guard Equipment Account.

There are also funds above the president’s budget request for four CH-47 Chinook Block II helicopters and a record $140 million for Humvee modernization for the Army Guard and eight C-130J cargo planes for the Air Guard.

The Guard's Counterdrug Program additionally received $305.8 million, its highest level ever and $203.5 million above the president’s request.

The fiscal 2024 Military Construction Act signed March 9 also includes funds Congress added to the president’s original budget proposal.

The act provides nearly $621 million, or more than $280 million above the request, for Army Guard projects in Arizona, California, Florida, Idaho, Illinois, Kansas, Maine, Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Texas, Vermont, Virginia, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

It gives nearly $296 million, or almost $117 million above the president’s proposal, for Air Guard construction in Alabama, Alaska, Arizona, Colorado, Florida, Indiana, Maine, Mississippi, New Hampshire, New Jersey, Oregon, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Wisconsin.

— By John Goheen