House Appropriations Committee Clears FY2014 Defense Appropriations Bill

House Appropriations Committee Clears FY2014 Defense Appropriations Bill

The House Appropriations Committee approved the FY2014 Defense Appropriations bill today.  Few changes were made to the bill as it was reported from the defense subcommittee last week.

The committee approved the bill and report on a voice vote after adopting three amendments:

  • Rep. Young’s manager’s amendment with technical and non-controversial changes (adopted by voice vote)
  • Rep. DeLauro’s amendment prohibiting equipment purchases from Rosoboronexport company unless certain conditions are met (adopted by voice vote)
  • Rep. Moran’s amendment requiring that part of the money for Afghan National Security Forces be used to recruit and retain women (adopted 24-22)

Links to the texts of the bill and report are on the committee’s website.

Notable portions of the report that relate to the national security space program include the following.  The committee —

  • notes that the Air Force has set aside 14 launch procurements for new entrants and says it supports fair competition in procuring commercial space launch services.  However, it also “must have confidence in [their] proper procurement.”  The Secretary of the Air Force therefore must submit a report within 60 days of enactment on how the Air Force will evaluate performance and reliability of the new entrants, how the Air Force will factor in other contracts these companies have with the government, whether the entrants will have to comply with Federal Acquisition Regulations, and how the Air Force will ensure openness and transparency.
  • directs DOD’s Director of Cost Assessment and Program Evaluation to submit a report by December 31, 2013 updating the space industrial base study “to quantitatively assess the consequences of the various acquisition approaches being advocated within the space community.” 
  • criticizes the Air Force for its inability to define the Space Modernization Initiative and directs the Air Force to do so within 60 days of enactment and specifies matters that must be addressed.
  • directs the Secretary of the Air Force to update Congress no later than 60 days after enactment on the progress being made on the Space-Based Infrared System (SBIRS) ground segment automated sensor tracking and ground enhancements given that Congress provided $80 million ($40 million each) for these elements in FY2013.

A number of space programs received mostly modest cuts (numbers are rounded):

  • EELV procurement is cut $10 million (from $1,843 billion)
  • Air Force RDT&E
    • Space Technology cut $10 million (from $104 million)
    • Advanced Spacecraft Technology cut $8 million (from $68 million)
    • Space Control Technology cut $4 million (from $27 million)
    • Space Protection Program cut $18.4 million (from $2 million)
    • NAVSTAR GPS user equipment cut $10 million (from $127 million)
    • Space Situation Awareness cut $50 million (from $400 million)
    • SBIRS High cut $30 million (from $353 million)
    • EELV cut $3 million (from $30 million)
    • AEHF milsatcom cut $14 million (from $273 million)
    • Space and Missile Center civilian workforce cut $10 million (from $192 million)
    • GPS III operational control segment cut $18 million (from $384 million)
    • Space Superiority Intelligence cut $1.5 million (from $12 million)
    • GPS III space segment cut $15 million (from $221 million)
    • JSPoC Mission System cut $2 million (from $59 million)
    • Space Situation Awareness Operations cut $6 million (from $19 million)

The committee also rescinds $123 million from FY2013 funding for the Precision Tracking Space System (PTSS), which is being terminated.

The bill, which funds the Department of Defense and the Intelligence Community, provides a total of $512.5 billion in non-war spending plus $85.8 billion for war funding (“Overseas Contingency Operations,” for the war in Afghanistan, for example).   The $512.5 billion is $3.4 billion less than the President’s request, but $28.1 billion more than the current budget when sequestration is taken into account.   The bill does not assume that the defense budget will be subject to sequestration in FY2014.  It is working under the terms of the FY2014 budget resolution passed by the House on March 21 that protects defense spending and makes cuts elsewhere in the budget to compensate.

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