Posts tagged "Budget cuts"
Dec 8, 2014

RICHMOND - Sen. Mark Warner says Virginia needs to diversify the economy in the wake of sequestration cuts, which have hit the military-heavy commonwealth hard.
"Sequestration was about the stupidest option possible, and Virginia, we bore the brunt of sequestration cuts more than virtually any other state," he said. The 2011 Budget Control Act's spending cuts could take nearly 3,000 Army and civilian jobs at Fort Lee.
Warner appeared via Skype at Wednesday's AP Day at the Capital program, a gathering of journalists sponsored by the Associated Press Media Editors, Capitol Correspondents Association and Society of Professional Journalists Virginia Pro Chapter.
 "We're asking our military to do more abroad, as we see threats from ISIL, when we see our troops deployed to Africa for Ebola," Warner said. The trouble will be finding additional funding for defense.
"The idea that that's going to come at the cost of cutting education, infrastructure and research isn't a good business plan for the country," he said. He thinks reform of the national tax code, and entitlement reform, are key to the budget issue.
The Army is in the planning process of downsizing from a wartime peak of 526,000 to about 420,000 troops. Under the latest Army report, Fort Lee would lose 2,794 troops - including 879 already cut in the deactivation of the 49th Quartermaster Group - and 746 civilians. That worst-case scenario would ding the region's economy by an estimated $338.4 million in sales and $243 in income, for a total of $581 million.
Warner also discussed Virginia's dependence on defense spending, highlighted in recent years locally by sequestration and the government shutdown. He thinks Virginia can take a prominent role in the areas of cybersecurity, unmanned aerial systems, commercial space operations and advanced manufacturing.
"I concur with the governor and others… we've got to think about diversification of Virginia's economy," Warner said.
"We have assets in Northern Virginia, Central Virginia and Hampton Roads. We've got expertise at Virginia Tech," for cybersecurity. Read Full Arrticle.

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May 3, 2013

WASHINGTON — Despite budget cuts requiring most federal agencies to furlough workers, the State Department says it will not have to force any of its employees to take unpaid leave.

State’s top management official said Friday that the budget sequester cut for the department would be only $400 million, less than half of $850 million that was originally estimated. Read full article.

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Oct 23, 2012

The threat of sequestration continues to loom over the federal government, and perhaps the only thing more evident than concerns about deep budget cuts is the sense of paralysis surrounding the possible implementation.
 
It is still far from certain that the 10 percent, $1.4 trillion across-the-board cuts to federal spending will actually kick in on Jan. 2. And directives from the White House and Office of Management and Budget have reinforced that sense of mere possibility, offering little in the way of concrete guidance for agencies to prepare for the so-called fiscal cliff.
 
Still, there are mixed signals. Defense Department officials have continued to warn of sequestration’s devastating effects. Those calls have come as recently as Oct. 19, when Defense Secretary Leon Panetta reminded a Hampton Roads, Va., audience that such cuts would jeopardize defense operations and that Congress must act to overturn the measure, which is mandated by last year’s Budget Control Act.
 
“There’s still time to prevent sequestration,” Panetta said, according to a DOD statement. “Let me be clear, no one wants this to happen…but for God’s sake, don’t just kick this can down the road.”  Read full article.

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Oct 3, 2012

Agency chief acquisition officers are not playing a big role in planning for sequestration or even future budget cuts.

An exclusive Federal News Radio survey of federal CAOs and senior procurement executives found 57 percent of the respondents said they are not preparing for smaller budgets.
 
Joe Jordan, the administrator of the Office of Federal Procurement Policy, said the survey responses weren't that surprising.
 
"With the budget situation overall, agencies have some good foreknowledge usually into what their agency's budget will look like," Jordan said in an exclusive interview on In-Depth with Francis Rose. "The important thing is to make sure that planning is integral to the acquisition process overall, make sure agencies are doing good acquisition forecasting, creating robust plans and conducting the appropriate market research, so they can cast a wide net for new businesses that can deliver the goods and services they need in the best possible way." Read full article.

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Jul 17, 2012
Sequestration - the automatic across-the-board cuts that will occur if an agreement cannot be reached regarding the nation's deficit.  These cuts would go into effect on January 1, 2012.  These defense cuts would take place over the span of a decade, amounting to $500 billion.

Prime Contractors in the defense industry are warning of massive layoffs, with Lockheed Martin threatening to layoff up to 123,000 personnel should sequestration occur.  Meanwhile, lobbying expenses from military contractors has increased by 11.5%, for a total of $15.9 million, in the first quarter of 2012 compared to the same quarter in 2011.  Northrop Grumman and Lockheed Martin increased their spending by 51% and 25% respectively.

Defense Secretary Leon Panetta made a plea to Congress in the end of June urging Congress to prevent sequestration budget cuts from threatening "the programs critical to our nation's security." 

Acting Office of Management and Budget (OMB) Director Jeffrey Zients has agreed to testify before his committee on the looming defense cuts.  This hearing will occur two weeks after the scheduled July 18 hearing in which members of the defense industry will discuss the impact of sequestration cuts on U.S. companies.

A majority of Democrats and Republicans (which includes the Obama administration) are opposed to the sequestration cuts, but both parties have so far failed to reach an agreement on the alternatives they could implement to replace the cuts.

By: Ira Evangelista, GovPartners Market Analyst

 

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