by Christopher Hellman
On June 11, House and Senate conferees approved a $105.9 billion emergency supplemental appropriations bill for the latter part of Fiscal Year (FY) 2009, which ends on September 30. The bill includes $79.9 billion for the Department of Defense, primarily to fund military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, roughly $4.4 billion more than the amount sought by the administration. This funding is in addition to the $65.9 billion “bridge fund” in war funding for FY 2009 that Congress approved last June.
In addition to funding combat operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, the bill provides $10.4 billion for the State Department and the U.S. Agency for International Development (USAID), and $7.7 billion for Pandemic Flu Response.
To date, Congress has approved over $814 billion for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, not including the $80 billion recommended by the Conference Committee. In addition, the Obama administration is seeking $130 billion in war funds for FY 2010. Both the House and Senate could take up the conference agreement as early as this week.
- Provides $600 million requested for the procurement of four F-22 fighters to replace aircraft lost in the theater of operations. Bars the use of these funds to shut-down the F-22 production line, and permits the Pentagon to ” explore options to develop an export variant of the F-22/A”
- Provides $2.7 billion in unrequested funds for eight C-17 transport aircraft and seven C-130J transport aircraft
- Provides $1.1 billion to respond to the threat from Improvised Explosive Devices (IEDs), $350 million below the request
- Provides $4.5 billion for the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) Vehicle Fund, $1.9 billion above the request
- Provides $534.4 million in bonuses for service personnel whose enlistments were involuntarily extended under the “Stop Loss” program
- Provides $453 million for the Commander’s Emergency Response Program (CERP), which allows U.S. officers to finance urgent humanitarian relief and reconstruction requirements in their area of responsibility
- Fully funds the $3.6 billion request to expand and improve capabilities of the Afghan security forces and the $400 million request for the Pakistan Counterinsurgency Fund
- Provides $1.1 billion for the Defense Health Program, $146 million above the request
- Provides $55 million for the Department of Energy’s nuclear threat reduction programs to safeguard nuclear material in Russia and other sites world-wide, but does not fund the $34.5 million request to continue disablement and dismantlement of North Korea’s plutonium program
- Provides $4.7 billion for foreign assistance and operations in Afghanistan ($1.4 billion), Pakistan, ($2.4 billion) and Iraq ($958 million), $1.1 billion above the request
DEFENSE FUNDING LEVELS (numbers may not add up due to rounding)
Administration Request: $75.5 billion
House: $81.3 billion
Senate: $73.0 billion
Conference Agreement: $77.2 billion
NOTE: Totals do not include amounts for “Military Construction” (See below)
Administration Request: $16.2 billion
House: $17.9 billion
Senate: $18.0 billion
Conference Agreement: $18.7 billion
Operations & Maintenance
Administration Request: $34.4 billion
House: $33.8 billion
Senate: $33.8 billion
Conference Agreement: $32.5 billion
Administration Request: $21.9 billion
House: $27.9 billion
Senate: $21.9 billion
Conference Agreement: $25.8 billion
Research, Development, Testing & Evaluation
Administration Request: $810 million
House: $722 million
Senate: $886 million
Conference Agreement: $834 million
Revolving and Management Funds
Administration Request: $847 million
House: $847 million
Senate: $847 million
Conference Agreement: $847 million
Administration Request: $909.3 million
House: $1,097.3 million
Senate: $909.3 million
Conference Agreement: $1,055.3 million
Administration Request: $1.9 billion
House: $3.0 billion
Senate: $2.0 billion
Conference Agreement: $2.5 billion
OTHER DEFENSE PROVISIONS
Aircraft Procurement – The conference agreement includes $2.17 billion in unrequested funds for eight C-17 transport aircraft and $504 million in unrequested funds for seven C-130J aircraft (four MC-130J and three HC-130J). The agreement also provides $49 million for three UH-60 “Blackhawk” helicopters to replace operational losses.
National Guard and Reserve Equipment – Provides $500 million in unrequested funding for equipment for the National Guard and Reserve.
Military Medical Facilities – Funds the $263 million request to complete construction of the Walter Reed National Military Medical Center, including the Warrior Transition Center and the Ft. Belvoir Community Hospital. Provides $488 million in unrequested funds for hospital construction to update older facilities.
Permanent U.S. Military Bases in Iraq/Afghanistan – Prohibits the establishment of permanent bases.
Guantanamo Detainees – Does not fund the $80 million request to begin closure of the Guantanamo Bay detention facility. Prohibits current detainees from being released in the continental United States, Alaska, Hawaii or District of Columbia. Permits detainee transfer to the United States only for prosecution and only after notification to Congress and the receiving state. Bars release of current detainees to another country without prior notification to Congress. Requires the President to report to Congress describing the disposition of each current detainee before the facility can be closed.