U.S. Sen. Jim Inhofe (R-Okla.), a senior member of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC), today expressed his disappointment on the addition of a depot provision in the House and Senate passed conference report of H.R. 1540, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2012 (FY12). The new provision re-writes the 10 USC 2464 "Core" statute, redefining the definition of core logistics, expanding the waiver authority for core work done at the depots, arsenal and shipyards, and exempting commercial items from being considered core.
"The measure that the House of Armed Services Committee staff hastily included in the NDAA's conference report was not fully vetted and failed to consider the overall impacts on military readiness," said Inhofe. "Normally, language like this would be seen by all the stakeholders to include the military, Congress, depots, arsenals, shipyards, and industry. Unfortunately, that did not happen and Senators on the SASC were only made aware of the new language when it was too late to stop them from getting in the bill. Without a thorough examination, this comprehensive re-write of the "Core' statute could disrupt the existing balance between the Department of Defense's organic depots, arsenals, and shipyards and the industrial base. Disrupting this balance could prove disastrous to military readiness, to our industrial base, and to depots like Tinker Air Force Base and McAlester Army Ammunition Plant.
Inhofe continued, "Even though it will become law, I thank my friends, Chairman Levin and Ranking Member McCain, for their commitment to work with Members of the Senate to redress this oversight by slowing the implementation of the new law and fixing the language in the FY13 NDAA."