No BRAC, says HASC Panel

In its mark-up of the Fiscal 2014 defense authorization bill, the House Armed Services Committee’s readiness panel opted to prohibit the Defense Department “from proposing, planning, or initiating” another round of BRAC. That move came despite the Pentagon leadership urging Congress to authorize another BRAC round in Fiscal 2015. Among its other decisions, the readiness panel increased oversight of the F-35 strike fighter program and required DOD to issue a lifecycle sustainment plan for the stealth aircraft, according to a May 22 HASC release. The panel’s mark also would ensure “appropriate stationing of missile defense capacity in Asia” by requiring DOD to analyze and report on missile defense capabilities on Guam, states the release. Overall, the panel, led by Rep. Robert Wittman (R-Va.), said it addressed “many issues of concern for depleted force readiness levels and related high levels of assumed risk.” The full HASC is scheduled to hold its mark-up of the defense bill on June 5. (HASC readiness panel mark; caution, large-sized file.) (See also BRAC Again.)