President Obama on Tuesday signed the Budget Control Act of 2011 into law. This legislation raises the debt ceiling between $2.1 trillion and $2.4 trillion so that the US government will not default on its bills. The act also establishes discretionary spending limits for the period of Fiscal 2012 to Fiscal 2021, although it’s not exactly clear what the ramifications will be for the Defense Department. USA Today reported Tuesday that the budget act could result in DOD cuts of up to $900 billion over 10 years, more than doubling the $400 billion in cuts for DOD over 12 years that Obama proposed in April. Conversely, McClatchy Newspapers reported (via the Kansas City Star) that the Pentagon actually could benefit from the legislation. McClatchy claims that the debt plan might only trim $350 billion. Continue
The F-35 Joint Program Office has officially announced plans to issue multiple sole-source contracts to Pratt & Whitney to upgrade the fighter’s F135 engine—a widely expected move after Pentagon officials indicated they would do so earlier this year instead of developing an entirely new engine.