Policy Experts Call for More Base Closures to Boost DoD Savings

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A bipartisan group that represents policy experts has called on Congress to approve a new round of base realignments and closures, or BRAC, as a way to help the Defense Department eliminate unneeded military facilities and save money, Military.com reported Tuesday.

The Project on Government Oversight told members of the House and Senate Armed Services Committees in a letter published Monday the group believes that DoD will have more facilities than it needs “well into the 2020s” even if President Donald Trump implements his force growth plans.

A DoD review estimates the department will have 22 percent excess infrastructure by 2019, the U.S. Army will face an excess overhead of 33 percent, the U.S. Air Force will have 32 percent and the U.S. Navy and Marine Corps will have 7 percent combined, the letter says.

Trump’s 2018 budget proposal calls for Congress to authorize BRAC efforts for fiscal year 2021, which would be the first since 2005.

Lawmakers who oppose another round of BRAC have voiced their concerns over the impact on communities and implementation costs associated with base closures, according to the report.

POGO cited a 2005 DoD study that found nearly all civilian defense jobs lost following a base closure were eventually replaced with employment in various industries.

The group added the first four BRAC rounds generated nearly $7 billion in annual recurring savings combined.

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