CAGW Releases Analysis of Senate Defense Bill

For Immediate Release
October 5, 2011

 

Contact:  Leslie K. Paige 202-467-5334 Luke Gelber 202-467-5318

Washington, D.C. – Citizens Against Government Waste (CAGW) today released its preliminary analysis of the Senate version of the fiscal year (FY) 2012 Department of Defense (DOD) Appropriations Bill. The bill allocates $620.2 billion for the DOD, $39.9 billion below the amount provided in FY 2011 and $26.2 billion below the President’s FY 2012 budget request. The Senate bill appropriates $18.1 billion less than the $638.3 billion in the House version.

Unfortunately for taxpayers, the bill contains $2.9 billion for 49 earmarks that either were not requested by the Pentagon, represent a substantial increase over the budget request, and/or were not specifically authorized, thus meeting CAGW’s long-established earmark criteria. This dollar total represents a 25.6 percent decrease from the $3.9 billion in earmarks added by the House.

The following are some of the most outrageous examples of pork added by the Senate to the Defense Appropriations Bill:

  • $406,605,000 for the Medium Extended Air Defense System (MEADS). Created in 1995, MEADS is a collaborative missile defense project intended to replace the Patriot Missile system, which has been used by the U.S. and its allies for decades. MEADS has experienced cost overruns of $2 billion and is 10 years behind schedule. A March 9, 2010, Washington Post report quoted an internal U.S. Army memo asserting that the program “will not meet U.S. requirements or address the current and emerging threat without extensive and costly modifications.” When asked by Senator Mark Begich (D-Alaska) in a hearing of the Readiness and Management Support Subcommittee on March 29, 2011 whether he could guarantee that this amount would be sufficient to complete the research and design phase of MEADS, Undersecretary of Defense Robert F. Hale stated he could not. The Senate failed to authorize funding for MEADS, making the amount contained in this bill an earmark.
  • $354,000,000 for research, development, test, and evaluation in the Defense Health Program.
  • $250,000,000 for a weather satellite follow-on.
  • $15,000,000 for university research initiatives.
  • $1,125,000 for a preventive health allowance demonstration project.

Citizens Against Government Waste is a nonpartisan, nonprofit organization dedicated to eliminating waste, fraud, mismanagement and abuse in government.

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