The INSIDER daily digest -- July 29, 2022

By John Liang / July 29, 2022 at 2:45 PM

This Friday INSIDER Daily Digest has news on the Senate Appropriations Committee's defense spending bill and more.

The Senate Appropriations Committee this week marked up its version of the fiscal year 2023 defense spending bill:

Senate appropriators float $792 billion FY-23 defense budget

Senate appropriators today released their $792.1 billion fiscal year 2023 defense spending bill, proposing a nearly $12 billion boost in procurement in a plan that represents a nearly 4% increase over the president's budget request.

Senate appropriators seek to raise Air Force procurement; boost procurement and RDT&E for space

Senate appropriators would increase procurement for the Air Force and raise both procurement and research, development, test and evaluation funds for the Space Force in their version of the fiscal year 2023 defense spending bill.

Senate appropriations bill would cut nearly all IVAS funding

The Senate Appropriations Committee is seeking to cut nearly all fiscal year 2023 procurement funding from the Army's new augmented reality headset, according to an explanatory statement accompanying the chairman's mark of the spending bill.

News on U.S. Cyber Command and Air Force networks:

CYBERCOM AQ team poised for expansion

U.S. Cyber Command's acquisition arm is preparing to bring on dozens of new hires in the coming years as officials await the receipt of enhanced budgeting authority in fiscal year 2024 amid quickening adversarial moves to exploit network vulnerabilities.

Air Force CIO lays out goals to work more closely with industry partners

The Air Force hopes to build tighter ties with companies to field needed software capabilities and updates more quickly, Air Force Chief Information Officer Lauren Knausenberger said Tuesday.

Plus the latest defense cyber news from our colleagues at Inside Cybersecurity:

First CMMC voluntary assessment scheduled for August as DOD 'joint surveillance' program begins

The first official Cybersecurity Maturity Model Certification assessment starts Aug. 22 under the Pentagon's "joint surveillance voluntary program," where a certified third-party assessment organization will conduct the examination and report results to the Defense Contract Management Agency for final approval.

NIST official: Timing on update to CUI series subject to stakeholder feedback

Plans to update the National Institute of Standards and Technology's controlled unclassified information publications will depend on input gathered in a current pre-call for comments due in September, according to 800-171 series leader Victoria Pillitteri, who spoke at a July 27 summit focused on the Pentagon's Cybersecurity Maturity Model certification program.

Sen. Dan Sullivan (R-AK) this week put a pause on the Senate Armed Services Committee's ability to move forward with the nominations of Radha Plumb and Laura Taylor-Kale, tapped to be deputy under secretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment and assistant secretary of defense for industrial base policy, respectively:

Senator announces hold on DOD nominees for industrial policy, deputy AQ chiefs

Two of President Biden's picks for key Defense Department posts -- deputy acquisition chief and the newly created industrial policy head -- are facing a roadblock in their path for Senate approval after one lawmaker today warned he would be placing a hold on their nominations.

Gen. Stephen Townsend, who has led U.S. Africa Command for three years, spoke during a virtual event this week:

Outgoing AFRICOM chief warns of rising extremist threat

The outgoing commander of U.S forces in Africa on Thursday said the U.S. faces a growing threat from violent extremism on the continent, although he believes the force has the funds necessary to counter it.

The Senate Armed Services Committee, in its mark of the fiscal year 2023 defense policy bill, includes a provision urging the defense secretary to encourage the Air Force to transfer the RQ-4 Block 30 aircraft slated for divestiture to the Test Resource Management Center:

DOD testers acquire additional retired Global Hawks to support hypersonic weapon testing

The Defense Department is poised this month to significantly expand its fledgling fleet of high-altitude, long-endurance aircraft dedicated to monitor U.S. hypersonic flight tests, a development intended to support plans for an increased pace of assessments as well as opening new corridors for regular testing off the East Coast into the Atlantic Ocean.

The House-passed version of the fiscal year 2023 defense policy bill proposes a provision that would require the Pentagon to hire a federally funded research and development center to execute a study and deliver findings on the domestic, precision-munition industrial base within six months of enactment:

Eyeing Ukraine's war, lawmakers seek assessment on precision-munition surge options

Lawmakers want an independent assessment of the domestic, precision-munition industrial base, particularly any gap limitations on the Pentagon's capacity to replenish nearly two-dozen "critical" weapon systems in the event of a fight against Russia or China that extends more than six months.