Department of Defense, Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2013

Floor Speech

By:  Bill Young
Date: March 6, 2013
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. YOUNG of Florida. Mr. Speaker, I rise today in strong support of H.R. 933, which includes as Division A the fiscal year 2013 Defense Appropriations Bill.

The Defense bill is a good bi-partisan bill which was negotiated with the Senate late last year. It is critical that we pass this bill and get the Department of Defense out of a year-long continuing resolution, which would have devastating consequences--consequences that rival those of sequestration as several of the Service Chiefs have claimed.

The Defense bill provides the Department with funding in the proper accounts to match how the fiscal year 2013 funds were requested and will be executed, as opposed to the mismatch created by carrying forward the fiscal year 2012 enacted levels in a CR. Without correctly establishing this baseline for execution, the Operation and Maintenance accounts would have been almost $11 billion short--a shortfall almost equivalent to the sequestration reductions.

Passing a Defense bill also removes the prohibition on new starts and rate increases which exists under a continuing resolution. With over five hundred programs impacted by this prohibition, the Department would experience hundreds of significant schedule delays and cost increases. Also, over a billion in savings would be lost because the Department could not enter into multi-year procurement contracts.

It has now been 5 months since the fiscal year began. But because the Senate did not pass one appropriations bill last year, we find ourselves still trying to wrap up fiscal year 2013. I want to thank Chairman Rogers for including the Defense bill in this package. This bill is long overdue, and I urge its quick passage.

Chairman Rogers is the initiator of this plan to pass Defense appropriation and military construction as the major parts of this legislation and he deserves appreciation for his determination to make this important plan work.

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