The Insider

OMB: MILCON spending bill underfunded

By John Liang  
May 7, 2018 at 3:41 PM

The White House is telling House appropriators that the fiscal year 2019 military construction, veterans affairs and related agencies spending bill "underfunds key investments in critical areas supported in the FY 2019 budget request."

One of those "critical areas" is military construction, according to a letter Office of Management and Budget Director Mick Mulvaney sent today to Appropriations Committee Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-NJ).

In the letter, Mulvaney writes:

The Administration appreciates that the bill provides $11.3 billion for military construction, close to the full amount requested. However, the bill cuts approximately $950 million from the Administration's requested military construction projects and instead incrementally funds some requested projects while diverting $650 million to other unrequested projects. Many of these unrequested projects are not ready for construction due to the lack of planning and design and are not included in the Department of Defense's Future Years Defense Program. By incrementally funding, rather than fully funding, military construction projects, the bill delays critical resources to complete high-priority projects initiated in 2019 and puts the burden on future budgets to make up the difference. Government Accountability Office reports concur with OMB's position as a best practice.

Read the full letter.