Defense Health News
June 5 - Congress is preparing to write 12 fiscal 2018 spending bills without a budget resolution to set the top lines, hoping to craft funding for the government without knowing how much they can spend. New levels of dysfunction. "Regular order" is highly unlikely for fiscal 2018 appropriations. Politico Pro reports Republican leaders probably won't release the fiscal 2018 proposed budget resolution for several weeks.
May 23 - The White House released the President's fiscal 2018 budget proposal this morning. Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney held a press briefing immediately following the budget's publication online. You can read President Trump's full fiscal 2018 budget proposal here.
May 5 - The Senate on Thursday, May 4, passed the $1 trillion omnibus bill to fund the government through the end of September with a vote of 79-18. The President signed the bill Friday afternoon before the midnight CR deadline.
There are now only four-and-a-half months left before the new fiscal year begins on Oct. 1 The Senate Budget Committee will begin work on the fiscal 2018 budget resolution sometime in June. Get ready for another stopgap spending measure to avoid a government shutdown come September, as a compressed calendar, a delayed presidential budget request, the lack of agreement on spending limits, and a renewed focus on health care legislation have all conspired to slow down appropriations yet again.
May 1 - FY2017 Omnibus released! The 1,665 page FY 2017 omnibus includes the outstanding 11 spending bills and funds the government until the end of the fiscal year on September 20. The House will take up the measure first, followed by the Senate, before the current short-term continuing resolution expires May 5.
March 13 - Roll Call: "Last Wednesday, House members voted 371-48 to pass and send to the Senate a fiscal 2017 Defense appropriations bill that was the result of bipartisan and bicameral negotiations among senior appropriators. Senate Minority Whip Richard J. Durbin, the lead Democrat on the Senate’s Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, praised the bill, which he worked to draft. “This bill shows that we can make smart reductions to underperforming programs at the Department of Defense, and invest the savings in what really matters: support for the women and men in the Armed Forces and their families, new equipment for our troops, and investments in future technologies, including medical research,” the Illinois lawmaker said. “I look forward to this bill being the beginning of a process to fund the entire federal government in a responsible and fair manner.”
But there were few signs of early progress on measures other than that Pentagon spending bill, which Durbin described last week as a measure that “could be an important vehicle to get a lot of things done” with its arrival from the House. Sen. Dianne Feinstein, who has long traded the gavel of the Energy-Water subcommittee with her Republican colleague Lamar Alexander of Tennessee said last week she did not know how the fiscal 2017 process would advance. “I keep in touch with Lamar, and so far, nothing. So I don’t know what it’s going to be, and it’s very frustrating,” the California Democrat." Read the full Roll Call article here.
March 9 - Politico: "The House on Wednesday handily approved the final $584 billion defense spending bill for this fiscal year, kicking off an effort to fund all of the government for the rest of the year before the continuing spending resolution expires on April 28. The vote was 371-48. Forty-three Democrats and five Republicans opposed the measure. Unlike an initial defense spending measure passed by the House in June, the revised bill doesn't short fund the Pentagon's war account to boost base spending. Most Democrats opposed that bill, and the Obama administration threatened then to veto it. Instead, the new measure largely conforms to the National Defense Authorization Act passed in December. And the new Trump White House now supports the bill's passage." Read the full Politico story here.
March 6, 2017 - Earlier today, the final FY17 Defense Appropriations bill was filed, and the bill may come to the floor as early as next week. Go to PDF p. 274 to see the CDMRP table and page down for lists of programs in the PRCRP and the PRMRP. I think we did very well overall, and both PRCRP and PRMRP received boosts in funding. I anticipate that it will pass in the House, but the Senate may be more problematic. PDF of Defense fiscal 2017 Bill
March 2, 2017 - House Appropriations Committee: "House Appropriations Committee today introduced the final version of the fiscal year 2017 Defense Appropriations bill, which will be considered on the House floor next week. The bill closely reflects the Defense Appropriations bill the House passed last summer, and is consistent with the final National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2017. The legislation funds critical national security needs, including military operations and readiness programs, as well as health and quality-of-life programs for our troops and military families. In total, the bill provides $577.9 billion, an increase of $5.2 billion over the fiscal year 2016 enacted level and $1.6 billion more than the Obama Administration’s request. This includes $516.1 billion in base discretionary funding – an increase of $2 billion above current levels – and $61.8 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO)/Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) funding – $3.2 billion above current levels. When combined with the $5.8 billion in supplemental funding enacted in the Continuing Resolution that passed in December, the total Defense funding for fiscal year 2017 is $583.7 billion, an increase of $10.9 billion over fiscal year 2016." House Appropriations Committee Press Release
February 28, 2017 - Politico: "The House is expected to vote on fiscal 2017 Defense appropriations legislation sometime in the next two weeks, according to four senior congressional aides. The measure is not expected to be the same as the bill the House passed in June. That version would have shifted $16 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations funding to the base budget to cover the military's so-called “wish lists” of unfunded priorities and would have only funded the war budget through April." Read the full Politico Story.