The White House is raising concerns over language in House appropriators' fiscal year 2019 military spending legislation that would increase Defense Department funding for the Littoral Combat Ship and Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System programs.
"The bill adds funding to increase production for multiple acquisition programs by making significant reductions in DOD's military personnel and operation and maintenance accounts," states a June 12 letter from Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney. "In addition, the bill underfunds key investments in critical areas supported in the FY 2019 Budget request while funding programs that are not in line with the overall FY 2019 Budget request and the [National Defense Strategy], including:
* "Littoral Combat Ships (LCS). The bill provides $1.6 billion for the procurement of three LCS, $912 million above the FY 2019 Budget request for one LCS. These two additional ships are not needed. One LCS in FY 2019, when combined with the three funded in FY 2018, will keep both shipyards supplied with enough work to remain viable for the Frigate competition.
* "Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS). The bill provides funding for the JSTARS recapitalization program, which the Administration did not request in the FY 2019 Budget."
The full committee will mark up the bill today.