Defense Business Board to discuss space, 'Fourth Estate'

By John Liang / October 18, 2019 at 10:05 AM

The Defense Business Board will hold a mostly closed meeting next month to discuss the establishment of U.S. Space Command and the Space Force, among other topics, according to a Federal Register notice published this morning.

Derek Tournear, the acting director of the Space Development Agency, said this week during the Association of the U.S. Army's annual conference that the agency is still focused on initial next-generation space architecture planning and has some time before it needs additional funding to start building out constellations. The current plan is to launch a "training tranche" of satellites in the FY-22 time frame, which would be used to help space organizations develop a concept of operations and tactics, techniques and procedures for operating with the constellation. The first slate of operational satellites is set to launch in FY-24.

In addition to SPACECOM, attendees at the Nov. 6 DBB meeting will also get classified briefings on the National Guard Bureau and the Navy, as well as "discussions on proposed reform efforts, key challenges, and current scorecard within the Fourth Estate; classified discussions with the secretary of defense, deputy secretary of defense, and the chief management officer in regards to ongoing reform efforts," the notice states.

The Defense Department's CMO wrote in a recent report to Congress that about 5% can be cut from the Pentagon's so-called "Fourth Estate" civilian management agencies next year, falling far short of the reductions Congress hoped to see.