Army says $13 billion needed to repair, replace equipment

The Army needs more than $13 billion within the next 60 days to repair and replace equipment damaged or destroyed in Iraq and Afghanistan, or the service will have to delay efforts to restore battlefield equipment stocks, a senior Army official said Tuesday.

Lt. Gen. Stephen Speakes, the Army's deputy chief of staff for programs, warned that an fiscal 2008 funding delay would jeopardize the service's efforts to get much-needed equipment to troops in the field quickly.

It is "simple arithmetic," Speakes told reporters this morning at the annual Association of the U.S. Army conference. "You can't order the part without the money."

Last year, Congress approved $17.1 billion for the Army's so-called equipment "reset" efforts as part of a $70 billion wartime bridge fund attached to the fiscal 2007 Defense appropriations bill, giving service leaders adequate time and money to order enough spare and replacement parts to keep depot lines running throughout the year.

But that money is quickly running out, and service officials expect they will need to replenish their inventories by December. By March or April, repair lines at the Army's depots could come to a halt, Speakes said.

Increasingly frustrated with the Bush administration's handling of the Iraq war, senior House appropriators last week said they would not consider its $193 billion fiscal 2008 supplemental spending request for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan until next year.

House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee Chairman John Murtha, D-Pa., has stated that Congress will not allow funding to run out for deployed troops, leaving open the possibility of attaching a large wartime bridge fund to the fiscal 2008 Defense spending bill, currently the subject of House-Senate conference negotiations.

Between the possible bridge fund and the military's ability to transfer fourth-quarter dollars in its base budget to pay for the war, money for operations would be adequate through March, Murtha has said.

But Tuesday Speakes stressed the Army needs the reset funding up front in one large chunk to allow the service to order adequate repair parts and keep the lines going -- not in smaller increments appropriated throughout the year. "I won't be able to meet the requirements unless I get the funding I need when I need it," Speakes said.

Stay up-to-date with federal news alerts and analysis — Sign up for GovExec's email newsletters.
FROM OUR SPONSORS
JOIN THE DISCUSSION
Close [ x ] More from GovExec
 
 

Thank you for subscribing to newsletters from GovExec.com.
We think these reports might interest you:

  • Going Agile:Revolutionizing Federal Digital Services Delivery

    Here’s one indication that times have changed: Harriet Tubman is going to be the next face of the twenty dollar bill. Another sign of change? The way in which the federal government arrived at that decision.

    Download
  • Cyber Risk Report: Cybercrime Trends from 2016

    In our first half 2016 cyber trends report, SurfWatch Labs threat intelligence analysts noted one key theme – the interconnected nature of cybercrime – and the second half of the year saw organizations continuing to struggle with that reality. The number of potential cyber threats, the pool of already compromised information, and the ease of finding increasingly sophisticated cybercriminal tools continued to snowball throughout the year.

    Download
  • Featured Content from RSA Conference: Dissed by NIST

    Learn more about the latest draft of the U.S. National Institute of Standards and Technology guidance document on authentication and lifecycle management.

    Download
  • GBC Issue Brief: The Future of 9-1-1

    A Look Into the Next Generation of Emergency Services

    Download
  • GBC Survey Report: Securing the Perimeters

    A candid survey on cybersecurity in state and local governments

    Download
  • The New IP: Moving Government Agencies Toward the Network of The Future

    Federal IT managers are looking to modernize legacy network infrastructures that are taxed by growing demands from mobile devices, video, vast amounts of data, and more. This issue brief discusses the federal government network landscape, as well as market, financial force drivers for network modernization.

    Download
  • eBook: State & Local Cybersecurity

    CenturyLink is committed to helping state and local governments meet their cybersecurity challenges. Towards that end, CenturyLink commissioned a study from the Government Business Council that looked at the perceptions, attitudes and experiences of state and local leaders around the cybersecurity issue. The results were surprising in a number of ways. Learn more about their findings and the ways in which state and local governments can combat cybersecurity threats with this eBook.

    Download

When you download a report, your information may be shared with the underwriters of that document.