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CVA Statement on Prohibition of Military-Strengthening Measure

By Concerned Veterans for America

Arlington, VA – Last night the House voted to block a new round of base realignments and closures (BRAC) for at least another year. Lawmakers adopted by voice vote an amendment from Reps. John Ratcliffe (R-TX) and Bill Shuster (R-PA) to prohibit funding for a new BRAC as part of a national security appropriations bill, H.R. 3219.

Recently, Concerned Veterans for America (CVA) outlined the group’s NDAA recommendations for FY-2018, which included a mandate that the DOD become audit-ready, an authorization of a new BRAC round, and continued streamlining of the DOD acquisition process.

CVA Policy Director Dan Caldwell issued the following comment:

“We are disappointed that Congress is actively prohibiting something which would make the American military more efficient and effective. BRAC is a practical measure with support from both sides of the aisle, and a new round would save billions for the Pentagon and taxpayers alike. We will continue pushing for BRAC and other measures that will strengthen our military readiness and drive fiscal responsibility at the Department of Defense.”

Last year, the DOD estimated that they will have 22 percent excess capacity at bases across the world by 2019. The last five rounds of BRAC since 1988 have allowed the DOD to reap nearly $12 billion in savings every year. The 2005 BRAC is now producing $4 billion in savings a year, even though there were higher-than-expected upfront costs.

The Pentagon has repeatedly requested authority to close unneeded or underutilized bases. Both the Obama and Trump administrations have called on Congress to institute BRAC.

Earlier this year, CVA joined the Cato Institute and forty other organizations to sign a bipartisan coalition letter in support of BRAC.