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I/ITSEC 2023: FY 2024 budget should not be approved this year, claim US lawmakers

28th November 2023 - 08:58 GMT | by Flavia Camargos Pereira in Orlando

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Soldiers of the 101st Airborne Division during the Combined Resolve exercise in Germany. (Photo: US Army)

US congressmen also expect reductions in the Pentagon’s defence proposal for the next fiscal year.

The Pentagon could have to wait until 2024 to make progress on a number of acquisition and development programmes, many of which have been operating under continuing resolutions (CRs), as US congressmen speaking at I/ITSEC 2023 in Orlando, Florida, that they did not expect FY 2024 budget to be approved before the end of the current calendar year.

‘I believe there will be, as you can tell, a lot of debate over the budget’, Republican representative Matt Gaetz (Florida) stressed. ‘We are literally working on it.’

The overall national defence budget request comprises $886.3 billion, with $842 billion being allocated to the DoD. It will cover investments in key defence areas to enable the department to meet critical current and future challenges.

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The Biden Administration has requested a supplemental $40 billion to address critical needs for emergency funding for the Pentagon, partners and allies.

Without mentioning specific initiatives and areas, Gaetz noted that he expected to ‘see reductions at the end of this budget negotiation’.

Other congressmen speaking at the training and simulation event pointed out that the approval process could require a longer discussion to clarify all of the issues involving the Biden administration's request.

‘I think we have to get serious about budget, about what can be done,’ remarked Democratic representative Bobby Scott (Virginia).

Republican representative Jack Bergman (Michigan) noted: ‘In order to exercise the fiscal responsibility, you actually really need to know where the money is going today.’

The 2024 fiscal year started on 1 October 2023. Since then, the government has been forced to work under short-term funding. While CRs enable the government to continue operating until the spending bill has been ratified, they preclude the services from starting new multi-year procurements that accelerate production for ongoing efforts.

Under this scenario, the delays in approving the defence budget can affect several projects and initiatives across the DoD and create a wider gap between Chinese and US military capabilities.

In November, Frank Kendall III, secretary of the US Air Force, warned that the financial unpredictability could impact the schedule of the B-21 long-range stealth bomber aircraft, Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missile (AMRAAM) and the Command, Control, Communications and Battle Management (C3BM).

It could also affect shipbuilding production, acquisition of ammunition and naval systems, in addition to preventing the start of production of Virginia-class submarines and the award of a second contract for the Columbia-class submarine programme.

Moreover, CRs can delay the ability to get critical munitions for the US military and its allies and partners, which would impact the supply of Tomahawk missiles, Advanced Medium-Range Air-to-Air Missiles (AMRAAMs) and Mk-48 torpedoes.

Shephard's I/ITSEC 2023 coverage is sponsored by:

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Flavia Camargos Pereira

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Flavia Camargos Pereira


Flavia Camargos Pereira is a land reporter at Shephard Media. She joined the company in …

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