The Senate Armed Services Committee has rejected the Pentagon’s request Thursday to hold a new round of military base closures due to its high up-front cost, Federal News Radioreports.
Jared Serbu writes that the base realignment and closure proposal, included in the 2014 Defense authorization bill, was also rejected by the Congress earlier this year.
Armed Services Subcommittee on Readiness and Management Support chairwoman Sen. Jeanne Shaheen said “I continue to believe, like many others, that we can’t afford the up-front cost of another BRAC, especially given the dramatically increased cost to implement the 2005 round of BRAC.”
The Senate is scheduled to review the proposal in a closed session in the next few days.
Defense Undersecretary and comptroller Robert Hale said that although the previous BRAC round “cost too much” at $35 billion, current circumstances such as a smaller force will ensure that BRAC 2015 will be much different.
Speaking at the Association of Defense Communities’ annual conference, Hale added that the Pentagon is also considering military treatment facilities for consolidation and closure.
“[Medical facilities] haven’t been restructured in many years, medicine has been moving much more toward outpatient care and TRICARE is now so successful that many of the people who would have otherwise used the military treatment facilities are now using TRICARE,” Hale said.
Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton Carter and Katherine Hammack, Army assistant secretary for installation, energy and environment, have recently expressed support for the proposed BRAC 2015 round.