Panel Approves Defense Spending Bill

May 13, 2016

On May 11, the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee approved its version of the FY17 Defense Appropriations Bill.

Lawmakers disregarded the Pentagon's requested 1.6 percent military pay raise and significant force cuts. Instead, the subcommittee funded a full 2.1 percent pay raise and provided funding for significant force increases as recommended by their House Armed Services Committee colleagues.

The budget also included a provision specifying funding for shipment of fresh produce to commissaries in the Pacific and Far East, in reaction to publicity about skyrocketing produce prices in Guam.

The subcommittee paid for the increases to the basic budget from special war accounts not subject to budget cap limits.

The administration and some in Congress oppose this controversial tactic, as it would leave only about six months of funding in the wartime account. 

House leaders believe this is the best way to improve immediate readiness, and that whoever the new president is will be able to request additional funding to meet wartime needs for the remainder of next year without requiring an exception to budget caps.



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