by Christopher Hellman and Travis Sharp
FY 2009 PENTAGON SPENDING REQUEST RESOURCES
“Top Line” Funding – The Bush administration is requesting $515.4 billion for the Department of Defense in Fiscal Year 2009, which begins on October 1, 2008. This is $35.9 billion or 7.5 percent more than current levels, or an inflation-adjusted (“real”) increase of 5.4 percent.
As part of total “National Defense” spending (Function 050) for FY’09, the administration is requesting $15.6 billion for the nuclear weapons activities of the Department of Energy, $5.6 billion for non-DOD defense activities, and $4.4 billion for additional mandatory spending. The administration also submitted a $70 billion placeholder figure for ongoing military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, but in testimony before the Senate Armed Services Committee on February 6, Secretary of Defense Robert Gates provided an estimate of $170 billion in war expenses for FY’09, although he expressed “no confidence in that figure” likely because it may increase over the course of the year.
Thus, the Bush administration is asking for $541 billion for “National Defense” (Function 050) and an estimated $170 billion for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan in FY’09, a grand total FY’09 request of $711 billion.
The Office of Management and Budget estimates that total annual funding for the Defense Department alone will grow to $546 billion by Fiscal Year 2013, a figure which is undoubtedly low. Total Pentagon spending, not including funding for the Department of Energy or for actual combat operations for the period FY’09 through FY’13 will reach $2.6 trillion.
Meanwhile, in January the Congressional Budget Office estimated that the deficit for FY’09 will be $198 billion. This estimate assumes that only $70 billion will be appropriated for military operations in Iraq and Afghanistan, and does not include the additional supplemental funding that will be requested later in the year.
Funding for Contingency Operations (Supplemental Appropriations) – In addition to its annual budget request, the Pentagon is also requesting $70 billion in supplemental funding for combat operations for Fiscal Year 2009. According to the Pentagon, this is only a partial figure, and additional funds will be requested later in the year. Congress has already approved nearly $700 billion in supplemental funding for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan and an additional $126 billion in FY’08 war funding is still pending before the House and Senate.
Missile Defense – The Administration is requesting $8.9 billion for the Missile Defense Agency (MDA) in FY’09, up roughly $350 million from the current $8.6 billion. The request includes $720 million for the third missile defense site in Europe ($96 million for Development, $382.6 million for Fielding, and $241.2 million for Military Construction). Missile defense continues to receive more funding than any other weapons program in the annual Pentagon budget. The $8.9 billion total does not include $2.3 billion for the SBIRS-High satellite program and a further $1 billion for programs such as Patriot and MEADS that are being funded directly by the services. Including these non-MDA programs increases the total FY’09 request for ballistic missile defense to $12.2 billion.
Shipbuilding – The request includes funding for the continued development of the Aircraft Carrier Replacement Program ($4.2 billion), the DDG-1000 [DD(x)] Destroyer Program ($3.2 billion for one vessel), and the Littoral Combat Ship ($1.3 billion for two vessels). It includes $3.4 billion for the purchase of one SSN-774 “Virginia” class nuclear attack submarine.
Aircraft – The request includes $2.0 billion for 23 of the Navy’s F/A-18E/F “Super Hornet,” $2.7 billion for procurement of 36 V-22 “Osprey” tilt-rotor aircraft, $6.7 billion for 16 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters and $4.1 billion for 20 F-22A “Raptor” fighters.
Mine Resistant Ambush Protected Vehicle (MRAP) – There is no funding for the MRAP program in the FY’09 Pentagon budget request. This program is being funded instead through supplemental appropriations. For example, Congress approved $16.8 billion in supplemental funding for the MRAP program in FY’08.
Military Personnel – The request includes an increase in base pay of 3.4 percent. According to the Pentagon, base pay has risen 35 percent since 2001.
Army/Marine Corps End Strengths – The budget request funds an additional 7,000 troops for the Army in FY’09, for a total of 532,400. It also funds an increase of 5,000 Marines, for a total force of 194,000. In all, the Pentagon expects to grow the Army by a total of 65,000 (to 547,400) and the Marine Corps by 27,000 (to 202,000) over five years, a plan that the Congressional Budget Office estimates will cost an additional $162 billion over the 2008 to 2017 period.
Joint Improvised Explosive Device Defeat Fund (JIEDDO) – The request includes $500 million for JIEDDO, a program working to develop counter-IED technologies. This FY’09 request is the first time JIEDDO funding has been requested in the “base budget” instead of through war supplementals.
Homeland Defense – The request contains $17.6 billion for Pentagon activities related to homeland security including detection of and protection against weapons of mass destruction, emergency preparedness and response, and protecting critical infrastructure. The increase in DoD’s FY’09 contribution over last year is 1.6 percent. NOTE: A footnote on the 2008 budget’s Table “Homeland Security Funding By Agency” (Table S-4) indicates that DoD’s contribution to homeland security has been revised upward significantly due to a change in methodology. Thus the 2007 budget shows a $16.4 billion DoD contribution to homeland security in FY’06, rather than the $9.5 billion shown in the 2006 request. The total FY’09 request for homeland security is $68.5 billion.
Cooperative Threat Reduction (CTR) “Nunn-Lugar” – The Administration is requesting $414.1 million for the CTR (also known as “Nunn-Lugar”) program, 2.8 percent below the current level of $425.9 million. The CTR program assists Russia and the former Soviet republics safeguard weapons of mass destruction and related technologies.
Prompt Global Strike – The request asks for $117.6 million to work on the Prompt Global Strike mission, a DOD effort to place conventional warheads atop long-range missiles in order to provide the capability to strike a small number of urgent targets – such as terrorists on the move or a rogue missile being readied for launch – anywhere around the world.
Department of Energy Activities – The request includes $6.6 billion for the nuclear weapons activities of the Department of Energy (a 5.1 percent increase), and $1.2 billion for DoE’s nuclear nonproliferation work (a 6.7 percent decrease). It includes $10 million for the Reliable Replacement Warhead (RRW) program, and $302 million for the Advanced Fuel Cycle Initiative – the Research & Development portion of the nuclear spent fuel reprocessing program under the Global Nuclear Energy Partnership.