Skip to main content

tv   Pentagon Officials Testify on Presidents 2023 Military Housing Budget  CSPAN  May 21, 2022 1:06pm-2:34pm EDT

1:06 pm
>> c-span is your unfiltered view of government. we're funded by these television companies and more, including charter communications. >> broadband is a force for empowerment. that's why charter has invested billions, building infrastructure, upgrading technology, empowering opportunity in communities big and small. charter is connecting us. >> charter communications supports c-span as a public service, along with these other television providers. giving you a front row seat to democracy. 6 military officials testified on the president's 2023 budget request for military family housing before a senate appropriations subcommittee. they talked about base housing living conditions, privatized housing and how inflation is impacting military members and their families. this is an hour and 25 minutes.
1:07 pm
[inaudible conversations] >> good afternoon, everyone, this hearing of military construction, veterans' affairs and related agencies appropriations subcommittees now called to order. the purpose of this hearing is to receive testimony from the representatives of the office of the secretary of defense and the military services regarding their fy-23 military construction and family housing budget requests. this year with the addition of a witness from the space force, our hearing will consist of two panels, the first panel includes witnesses from the offices of the secretary of defense, the navy and marine corps. the second panel will consist from the army, the air force and the space force. army-navy and air force and spaceforce braided like to say thank you to our first panel of witnesses for being here today from osd mr. paul kramer and assistant secretary of defense for energy
1:08 pm
installations and environment and from the navy vice admiral rookie williams and deputy chief of naval operations for readiness and logistics and marine corps lieutenant general commandant for installation and logistics. this year the department has sent over budget request of 12.5 billion for military construction and family housing at 23% increase over the last requests. it's also the highest request level since fiscal year 2012. the department has relied on and will contain to look towards congressional increases year-over-year to get at the true funding needs. while it's clear more needs to be done i am encouraged to see increased requests in this year's request includes a significant investment in several major infrastructure programs for the navy is asking for nearly 1.2 billion for three
1:09 pm
construction problems and 8 million design funding supporting the shattered infrastructure optimization program. in recent years this committee has been supportive of the navy's effort to overhaul our public shipyards and will continue to keep a close eye on the program for demering coors identified $330 million to continue the construction of the new base. the air force request the justice includes over 200 million for project supporting foreign 40 million in funding for the ground based strategic deterrent infrastructure. each of these programs will require many years of dedicated funding. i'm pleased to to request includes 553 million for the najera and conservation investment program. the highest amount since the creation of the program and the request underscores his administration's commitment to investing in critical energy
1:10 pm
resilience projects and a clear understanding of their tie to readiness. i will also note the future years defense program shows continued increases year-over-year given a clear demand for an increase complexity and cost of projects i expect the department to hold the bat plan. the need for united states to ask embrace and accelerate electrification and i'm encouraged by the army's commitment to install a microgrid on every installation by 2035 while each service is unique in its energy needs i expect each of you is looking closely at how to build a more ryssdal yet efficient and clean energy system. i look forward to hearing from you on that subject today. the request includes significant investments in our overseas posture. for design and construction of
1:11 pm
infrastructure infrastructure infrastructure supporting that ted turner and initiative their quest provides four to $30 million. the administration also asked for 41.2 billion for the specific deterrence initiative. the same time the need for recapitalization of existing facilities continues to grow. this year received unfunded party lists and defense agencies that totaled nearly $4 billion. many of the projects pushed out of the budget support the mission quality of life investments such as construction of new troops and family housing child development centers in critical training and infrastructure. we continue to see facilities age often held together by short-term maintenance fixes while the complexity of our infrastructure grows and cool market volatility drives up costs.
1:12 pm
the vulnerability of the staging of the structure to climate cyber and energy threats also cannot be understated. as such i must note the request once again clearly prior to assist the new mission infrastructure over current missions and existing facility recapitalization. i look forward to hearing about the investment strategies across the department. without i think her witnesses again for being here today and i will turn things over to ranking member hoeven for his opening statement. >> thank you very much mr. chairman died i'd also like to extend a warm welcome to her witnesses here today and just thank you. looking out in deciding to seeing all the uniforms and we just want to say thank you and we greatly appreciate it is pleasantly surprised to see this years. her quest $12.2 billion which is an increase over last year's
1:13 pm
request. it's one of the highest request in years and also an 18% decrease from the fiscal year 2022 level of 14.9 for the fiscal year 2022 bill bill included unprecedented funding levels which was necessary as the portfolio is routinely underfunded and taken on increasing levels of risk through the years. unfortunately this doesn't seem to be changing in this year's request remains 1.5 at the% of the total dod budget not concerned about multiple aspects of this years budget to further compound the challenges resented to milcon. further i'd like to add nonfat one to $100 million was an expensive price tag and increments were the exception rather than the rule. now we are looking at projects
1:14 pm
that exceed $1 billion becoming a common way of doing business. nearly one third of this sort year's request is for 27 projects and we know more will be added in future requests. we have known for years the more complex and large-scale projects are to take up a greater share of the budget without corresponding increases in a constrained budget gets squeezed even further to accommodate increments of these expensive projects. another challenge is the impact of supply chain issues on the construction market and corresponding increase in projects. when the challenges of milcon is budget development and project execution. with the current environment exacerbating this issue frankly i'm concerned about market volatility supply-chain
1:15 pm
disruptions and worker shortages the cost of fuel unprecedented increases in fuel costs and record inflation and how it impacts the budget as well as the programs execution. i'd like to know what the department is doing to address these issues and budget estimates in project execution. it's a big task. they've been notified of projects that are outdated which doesn't bode well for the program. i look forward to working with the department to address these issues and the work needed to ensure a successful milcon program in at bat i yield back mr. chairman. >> thank you senators boozman. we will now proceed with statement starting with mr. cramer event admiral williamson and finishing with general banta. mr. cramer you are recognized in
1:16 pm
your full written statement will be entered in the record. >> ranking members. >> ranking member boozman and nissan versa thank you for the opportunity present the present fiscal 2023 butter crust. my full written statement as been submitted for the record and i will highlight a few areas. a deletion germane one of our primary weapon systems and the stark reality is we must ensure they are not only ushered to set port the joint force but their resilience against a full range of natural and man-made threats. our 2023 budget request support surfers to address mission requirements ensure servicemembers have a safe place to live and work in address their resilience challenges. we requested 29.2 billion for military construction and sustainment modernization funding for facilities to address critical mission requirements and help save the concerns within the current environment for this will be used to rip place for storing
1:17 pm
modernized the capabilities to enhance their resilience to climate events and promote elimination of excess facilities for the department is addressing a range of technical operational and cost initiative to enhance the use of energy in warfighting one warfighting $1.9 billion request for insulation energy resilience and conservation initiatives will ensure our energy supply and a sustainable and affordable. but that one of these efforts for the energy resilience and conservation investment program provides the full support in the full range of projects and technologies but will increase focus on building cybersecurity, microgrids that incorporate energy generation and power storage technologies. ..
1:18 pm
are already costing billions of dollars. those costs are likely to increase. our resilience investments are guided by the department of defense climate adaptation plan which provides a roadmap for dod activities and investments to enable operations to continue under changing conditions while preserving operational capability and enhancing that natural and man-made systems essential for success program meant to protect and quality of life are personnel and our primary focus is ensure access to safe, high quality affordable family and housing. our budget includes $1.9 billion to support our worldwide
1:19 pm
nonprivatized housing inventory which includes more than 35,000 government owned and 5800 leased united airlines. . i look forward to your questions. >> distinguished members of the committee in conjunction with the other members of 9 panel i appreciate the opportunity to provide an update on the quality and resilience of our navy
1:20 pm
installations. thank you for the support of the navy and the military program and our 71 installations around the world which enable us to strengthen readiness and support delivery of new and lethal platforms. additionally thank you for the ongoing quality of life programs which are critical to our overall success of our navy. in december of last year the chief of naval operations issued a call to action for every navy leader to apply a set of navy proven leadership and problem solving best practices that empower our people to achieve exceptional performance. we've embraced this call because this is how weevils conducted our business. constantly self-assessing as part of an effort to get real and self-correcting our discrepancies to get better. to me the challenges of strategic competition and evolving theater environment we must enable global logistics with resilient short
1:21 pm
infrastructure and be honest about our current performance. maintaining our advantage requires transformational changes to support and sustain the fleet of the future. we recently released the naval global strategy which is the navy's strategic direction for the navy enterprise aligned with tragedy. it requires short platforms to be capable of supporting full spectrum conflicts with near peer competitors and protecting against responding to and recovering from attacks or disruptions intended to degrade operations. this strategy provides a roadmap for identifying and resourcing all shore operations, activities and investments and enabling fleet or fighting capabilities aligned to the c.n.o.'s navigation plan. navy installations located around the united states or around the world are short platforms naval sources train, deploy fort presence to enable geographic commanders meet
1:22 pm
operational requirements. a modernized and ready organic industrial base is a vital component of readiness and the navy is leading efforts to take an enterprise wide approach to optimize infrastructure at the shipyards and low gestic complexes that prepare and modernize our ships, submarines and aircraft. the shipyard optimization program, syop is to prepare the shipyards to knee the need of the navy nuclear powered submarine and aircraft carrier force. funding applied to our installations support climate resilience which is an important component of installation readiness and the navy works to ensure the infrastructures are resilient to a range of challenges including extreme weather. it's a privilege to testify before the committee and i look forward to answering questions. questions. exit chairman heinrich, ranking member boseman and establish members of the committee
1:23 pm
>> thank you for the opportunity to discuss the marine corps budget request today. first "like to thank you for the funding of last year's budget request and unfunded priorities list and that fund check totaled over $2 billion accelerates the commute design initiative and invests in the marine corps' ability to fulfill the title 10 obligations now and in the future. our installations play a key role meeting the challenges in our nation. marine corps' overseas installations are especially critical as advanced naval bases in support of naval and joint operations. we need modernize infrastructure that is resilient against threats ranging from connecticut tech, security breaches and damage from extreme weather. fy 23, broader focus including life, health, safety issues, quality-of-life projects and infrastructure support for new
1:24 pm
platforms. over half of this request is focus on the pacific including for projects in guam that will help foster the 22000 marines located west of the international dateline in a fighting stance. the quality-of-life of our marine, sailors, families is integral to the readiness and effectiveness of our force. new child of element center marine corps air station, will be complete this summer. three more projects are planned. the marine corps is in the process of renovating 12 barracks in fy 22 and we plan to renovate 15 more in fy 23. which will include the lives of approximate 4000 marines. last through the main course focus on family house include implementation of the tenants bill of rights. the marine corps continues to look at the housing partners and the other services to ensure that our housing is safe and meets the needs of our residents. this year we plan to invest over $230 million in family housing construction and operations. including building family housing units in guam. the marine corps strives to
1:25 pm
invest in resilient installations that enable operational readiness. recent infrastructure investment included projects that reduce our reliance on fossil fuels and off-base energy grids. for example marine corps was just as a first net zero installation base generate more power through green energy sources than it consumed in calendar year 2021. and provided about 8 megawatts back to the local grid. the marine corps is also invested in microgrids installation second power mission essential functions for more than two weeks ensuring continuity of operations. finally, the marine corps is investing the modernization of its organic industrial base. these projects optimize existing facilities, construct new sellers improve workflow processes and productivity at the marine corps is too deep as the marine corps is currently undergoing a significant transition in how it is organized, trained and equipped to meet current and evolving threats from adversaries for operational capabilities are adapting to meet threat changes and we need to invest in
1:26 pm
next-generation infrastructure to match our evolving capabilities. thank you for the opportunity to testify before you today. and for your oversight, input and support as we determine infrastructure requirements that will best position the marine corps for mission accomplishment. i look forward to working with you to sustain our war fighting capability and readiness of our power projection platform is right look forward to your questions, thank you for a quick thinker general. we are going to take a brief recess while the two of us go and boats. maybe we'll come back and start five minute round questions. let's call this hearing back to order. will start standard five minute rounds. i will begin by recognizing myself and then we will go to saturday boseman and traded back and forth. mr. cramer, i mentioned in my opening statement that i was encouraged by the request in this a budget and particular of interest is the increase in planning and design funding.
1:27 pm
what should help build out the projects that are ready to execute in the coming years. it is also my understanding the program is undergoing some reforms to improve planning and execution. can you talk a little bit about the need for significant planning and design request and how the department is improving how it identifies and executes projects? >> yes enter thank you for the question. has a long history i'm getting to where we are at today. it used to be a program that was a lump sum and we develop the projects. the projects would then take four plus five years in order to actually get under contract and executed for a lot of cases the projects would fall off. so over the years have been trying to get to look more like the process where we have. this year the first years were actually going to see that
1:28 pm
effectuated. with got the leadership commitment to fund the pnd. ~ plus million dollars is a surge this going to allow us to get more projects to that 35% design mark so that we can get projects awarded in the year of appropriation. i think that is where you will see inflation, cost delivering growth eats away at our ability to do projects were just not quite frankly ready. what the surgeon pnd is going to laos to do is build up for projects weaved on the notification you can see some of that really going after the microgrids that are going to make a difference on the installations. without the p and d we are not going to be able to then get the energy projects that we need in a time that we need it. that's more to the left not to the right. we're really going to rely on that pnd to get it up. i will let my two colleagues answer more. >> yes, sir.
1:29 pm
we are very excited from improving our theater posture. we have wondered $33 million right now going in for eight projects. a large portion of those are in guam. in addition to that, keeping the operation output the resilience of our bases it's very nicely into that as well. we aren't looking at a project there, joint base the same. in addition to that we also havt controls. one of the other things we can leverage and bring into it is also cyber security. things very much go hand-in-hand. take a look at that holistically not only from an investment of the infrastructure but also from a logistics perspective. anything we can do to help with
1:30 pm
our energy consumption allows us freedom to maneuver. in addition to that taking full advantage for electrification also related to looking at the whole package if you will. we are increasing from 1300 roughly vehicles, electric vehicles to 1600 this year. in addition that were putting on that 100,000 in. that allows us now we support in the pacific look working with ted and his team addition to that assessment something i chief taught me a long time ago you must be proficient. we've also operate a handbook which would give her base commanders we do exercises not which test the electrical infrastructure to help highlight potential areas for us to invest in. i will turn it over too ted now. >> thanks ricky. senator, thanks for the question. similar to the navy we have
1:31 pm
really appreciated the opportunity to use the program to improve the resiliency of some of our installations. i mentioned in my opening statement about the microgrids we have developed on five of our installations right now. quite a bit of support from the program to develop those. it really improves our operational readiness and or operational resiliency. not only here but as we move further west and they put in trenton pacific but would call advanced naval bases. so we have made pretty good use of the program. seven projects from fy 18 to 22 we've got one in fy 23 from mike org brick grid at bridgeport then we've got five more fy 24 and were looking to try to develop seven more in fy 25. tremendously valuable it is been helpful to us. it's not just microgrids it's controls as admiral williams has mentioned. anchor for the opportunity. >> absolutely. i am thrilled to see the use of storage in particular within the
1:32 pm
microgrids. we have come a long way in just a couple of years. but that ranking member boseman. >> thank you, mr. chairman. what i would like to do is a trade with senator collins. >> thank you very much i very much appreciate that. that are boseman mr. chairman. admiral williamson this year's of budget request more than $5 million the main. this project they don't to tell you it's vitally important to the readiness of the submarine fleet beginning in 2024, scheduled virginia class maintenance availability at the shipyard will exceed its capacity. and failure to complete this
1:33 pm
project would result in 20 deferred maintenance availabilities through 2040. this project is simply must be completed on time or we will risk our submarines not being available to accomplish their missions. we are faced with high inflation as far as labor costs and construction materials are concerned. and they have an impact on this project. is the navy committed to ensuring that this project remains on track and on time? >> yes, ma'am, absolutely we are committed for all the reasons you just said. as we look at costing going forward applying lessons learned for the first time out of the gate obviously were going to be very important to maintain our ability to stay on scope, stay on cost and stay on schedule.
1:34 pm
as we auteur our airy development plans, as we build our drydock's comment that vision is getting much clearer now, we are beginning to find opportunities to push things and so we have taken into account cost for inflation, material cost, cost of labor. we are using third-party estimators to help us better refine that. also within our budget went just ask for the money to make up some of the difference of the projects in 2022 but we are committed to that man put. >> think very glad to hear that. as you note the vehicle shipyard is considered the gold standard among our public shipyards. we are very proud of the contribution the shipyard makes to our navy international security.
1:35 pm
mr. cramer, i just returned from a senate trip to kyiv and ukraine, to sweden and finland. i am particularly interested in that european defense or deterrence initiative. the department's budget request also includes $746 million for infrastructure projects in europe. to help deter russian aggression reassure our allies. this lviv training complexes which i visited in france. [laughter] in march to observe the training operations of the army that deployed of ukraine. how is the department planning
1:36 pm
for infrastructure changes that may result in adjustments to our pastor in europe following russia's invasion? >> senator that's a great question. be speaking out of my lane if i talk about forced posture. i do want to extend thanks to congress for the past funds that were provided under the edr, eri going way back to 2014. our ability to surge in europe today in the current crisis was based on all of those investments expand upon previous investments that will then shape the force the president wanted to as we go forward.
1:37 pm
we have capitalized on previous investments that allow us to surge. >> thank you, mr. chairman appreciate the you in the ranking member joe on this committee. mr. cramer, your opening statement talked about military housing, privatization initiative. even as a privatized housing and seen its face the challenges recently there so critical housing shortage for our service members. does this budget support any new privatized housing projects? >> so privatized housing as you are aware, new houses are funded through basic laws for housing private partner except in the cases where we have some projects in the air force has these mainly supports the air
1:38 pm
force we do have dollars in there to build that marine corps' the army and that reinforce. we get within her own inventory pick. >> i'll get to that in a second period i have heard from many of the secretaries that it's hard to meet at the same in arkansas and the same in new mexico as it is in montana. there are no houses off base there are just none. and that are off base the rates have gone through the roof. the question is, we are going to
1:39 pm
expect or demand army, air force, navy, marine, coast guard the works, how is it even possible without housing? ask as you reference a housing shortage is not just specific to the d department. it is a nationwide issue. within the department of defense another undersecretary office runs the bh program. that is a survey of the rents in order to set that amount so we can afford our -- service members can afford to rent it doesn't do much for the inventory to expand the inventory is going to be a couple of years down the road. we do have a mechanism from within to get the right entitlements in service ownership pockets. they prove some temporary increases prior to the end of last year. we saw cost of rents this is the time of the year we start in the
1:40 pm
ba service for next year. their part and partial within the contractors to go out and test those rents. it doesn't help any housing crisis today. but it allows the entitlements to match the projecting housing costs are going to be going into next year. >> i've got you. and i appreciate everything that has been done. i think it a step that has to be done. the problem is we don't have inventory. we just don't have inventory. and if we bring up your counterparts and beat the hell out of them they don't have the ends drink where they are we really put them in a bind there's no place to live. and by the way they know it. they know it. let's talk about the on-base stuff more that is where the young service members, single service members live.
1:41 pm
that environment for them from a recruitment standpoint is also very, very important much less very important make sure they're able to do the job they are assigned. so, give me an idea what's in this budget for the dod to include living conditions for a young, unaccompanied service members? >> so, you can defer. >> we do fund within our normal start the top message read the sustained modernization funds do have funds in there to sustain the inventory but a number of projects with this panel. we do have an investment it is a continual investment in her unaccompanied housing. >> just before you start lieutenant general, so sustainment is important. but growth is also important.
1:42 pm
i want you to address both of them if you could. thank you, senator. the secretary is correct that we have made investments in both growing our deq, the quarter capacity but also looking at what will it take to sustain it? very quickly a total of 680 barracks across the marine corps. the vast majority are pretty decent shape. either q1 or q2 on the facility's condition index. that is about 84% of them that's not to say this not to work to do we have done work over the years to include investing 3.3 billion for fiscal year oh eight to 23. moving forward affect 12 renovations underway this year. and then we've got 15 additional renovations for fiscal year 23. >> that is just for the marine corps correct? >> the other service have the equivalent of more? >> i would defer to the other services for.
1:43 pm
>> we will assume they are. and then i would say for the projects an actual new construction of two bachelor quarters in fy 23 over in japan. one in an air base one in camp beutler. we have requested for additional deq's owner and fender priority list to help expand capacity or recruit depots as well as hawaii. click thank you, mr. chairman i apologize for. >> ranking member boseman. >> thank you, mr. chairman. i mentioned earlier the many economic factors facing the department and budget development project execution such as extreme market vulnerability and record inflation. vice admiral williamson lieutenant general i would like to know these impacting impacts
1:44 pm
you are seeing on a project execution and what you are doing to mitigate the issues? very importantly as everything we can do as a committee? >> yes, sir, thank you very much for the question. i'll start with the projects and execution now from fy 22. between the 16 and 33% increase due to inflation. the work make sure the projects stay on schedule obviously there will be some impacts for that. projecting forward how do we handle this going forward? like in fy 23 projects and beyond we are estimating now some between nine -- 17% increase to the price due to
1:45 pm
increased cost of fuel trade increased cost of material. we pulling so that lessons we learned. and using the say ahead of these things. by putting more money into planning and designing helps us to get closer to cost schedule will allow us to maintain -- stay ahead of those issues. you asked what would benefit? i think increasing a wreath programming threshold. execute the projects particularly re- programming to stay on the schedule. in addition to that, a lot of projects fs rm related multiyear funding would also allow us not
1:46 pm
only to deal with inflation but continuous resolution and things like that. that would give us on track. >> thanks admiral perry to admiral williamson i both draw from the same data sources we agree as we have the similar concerns. i would say in terms of where it helps us he specifically mentioned for the reasons he said that be tremendously helpful give us more flexibility in the ability to plan and execute over long period of time and mitigate the impact of continuing resolutions per think that be helpful. we do have a number of homes we are currently constructing over on guam. the area cost factor there is significant and compounded by
1:47 pm
inflation. there has been a significant cost increase and those were looking at as well. >> thank you sir. >> if you don't mind up at a finer point on the image and incremental funding actually helps us hedge some inflation. we are not having to pay that full bill during hires mostly datable show high inflation is always followed by some lower number. excess today turns into good savings later on. we can do split funding to account for a lot of that as we go forward, incremental funding is a definite help going forward. on call the corps of engineers is also looking at this and what is the cost of the construction and on
1:48 pm
the acquisition history looking at the weather is the greater cost of the growth within all of our programs because 22, but we do or do not get done in 22 will affect 23 there were not only looking at the projections that we have done for fiscal year 23o have to be informed about what we will actually get done this year and a split funding, allows us to have some of the 'but you know not all of it, the fence we have to have all of the sons year and we do not by, we then by next year so is compounding. >> thank you and in the interest of getting to the second panel, we are going to skip the second round admirable and admiral williamson i have couple of questions regarding the situation everett hill, the lack of cost estimates and ongoing assessments given some the commitments that have been made their in particular with the hawaiian department of health and i will get you those for the record and you can get back to
1:49 pm
me and with that, we can letter first panel go and ask our second panel to take the sea. >> and i will be submitting some as possible give you some homework to do and so thank you all. [background sounds]. [background sounds].
1:50 pm
[background sounds]. to mecca i would like to welcome our second panel, revisiting is deputy chief of staff of the air force lt. general and deputy chief of staff, for just weeks engineering and force protection and mr. bruce hollywood associate chief of operations officer for the united states space force i will last for witnesses to opening statements beginning with general evans followed general. in mr. hollywood, and general evans you can proceed with your opening statement. >> distinguished members of the committee on behalf of 1 million soldiers and 2.2 million emily members, thank you for your
1:51 pm
continued support and supporting our budget request for fy 23 and for providing additional billion dollars in funding for key programs such as barracks, childcare facility, and housing in the army's budget for insulation aligns with priority set by the army senior leaders and people and modernization readiness and alliances and partnerships in this year, fy 23 budget when requesting 8.1 million for the armies insulation infrastructure and 1.9 billion of that is military construction is is going to billion is facility sustainment restoration and monitors station and the request is focus on improving children family quality-of-life and also includes project to improve readiness modernization for all components at various locations throughout the united states and make the best use of finding a lot of this is in the army and we are working to balance the restoration modernization and demolition across all components
1:52 pm
especially is a project typically have faster impact on improving our facilities rather than just up. solution we must continue to ensure our soldiers and their families have access to safe and high-quality housing five remaining focused on improving our housing portfolio by continuing to implement measures to increase the safety, quality inhabited and habits by entering the military housing companies, are accountable for the project performance and during february 2022, the army released a comprehensive strategy that is wellness and with the dod climate adaptation plan the army strategy direct action to enable our forces to operate and changing environments and strengthen the zillions of our installation and increase the capabilities of her force, while also reducing our greenhouse gas emissions, we also continue to leverage the assessment tools will climb into eight and five potential hazards caused by climate change, edit form or
1:53 pm
mitigation planning efforts and i appreciate this opportunity to discuss the importance of the army military construction initiative in every insulation we endeavor to take care of the soldiers and families wagering access to quality facilities housing berries and childcare and to do that we continue support by providing timely adequate sustainable and predictable funding so insulation remain ready and resilience to provide the quality of life that are soldiers in our families deserve pretty and again i appreciate this opportunity and i look forward to your questions. >> good afternoon, and distinguished members of the subcommittee number on it appeared before you today discuss the fiscal year 2023 air force military concession and family housing program i like to begin by thinking subcommittee first for your steadfast generous military construction funding contained within the fy 22 consolidated appropriations act and also thankful for fy 22 and be a technical amendment, which enables us to award over a
1:54 pm
billion dollars natural disaster recovery projects air force base, the next few months forward to working with the subcommittee in fiscal year 2023 air force military construction budget request and tactfully new challenges to improve the program predict our nation faces an array of complex challenges rapidly evolving global environment and in addition to the threat imposed by adversaries another on-site doctors, transboundary challenges such as climate change, also demeanor attention. in fiscal year 2023, military construction budget requests a arson 2022, national defense strategy in my investing in our airmen and their families, accelerating the recapitalization of the nuclear enterprise, and supporting combatant command and across european and indo pacific theaters in fy 22 request is consistent with foster's request, lifting great strides in process to improve to create a more stable military construction that wheeled increase in the number of projects awarded in the year of appropriations, have better
1:55 pm
define process and reducing project delays for these requests and however we continue to work for numerous external influences affecting this portfolio the increased mobile and commodities and ongoing impact from the covid-19 pandemic from the effect of a change in climate. in the face of the challenges on the air force continues to balance risk and installation of investment with the to modernize and meet our most critical mission needs and overtime though this is resulted in natural facilities and infrastructure in order to mitigate some of this risk we optimize or use of military construction, as well as the operations of the maintenance funding at least two funding streams service foundation of sustainable air, and space force installation to a combination of well military construction projects, and continue facilities sustainment restoration and modernization funding we are able to write capitalized with required and sustained through day-to-day maintenance and repair torn and hunt to maximize the lifespan of
1:56 pm
those facilities and lastly while we remain focused on the health of our info structure, we keep in mind insulation on more than just where are airman work, many of them and their families call home in fiscal year 2023, request includes $670 million for efforts which directly support service members and their families, including housing construction improvements, operations and maintenance and privatized housing recitative, and continue construction of her basic military training dormitories at joint base san antonio entrance antonio in a critical quality-of-life facilities plays a vital role in the well being of our airmen, and for success and again thank you for your continued support, and the opportunity to testify today we look forward to your questions. >> good afternoon chairman and ranking member and distinguished members of of the subcommittee, thank you for the opportunity to discuss space force insulation, and a military construction
1:57 pm
program. the capabilities and benefits provided through space, are vital to our way of life, and critical be requisite to effective military operation across all other domains. over the past two decades the space domain has shifted from the benign environment to one that is contested where our adversaries are increasingly active and destructive predict we are our nation's newest military service, purposely built to organize and equip the space force to protect americans interest in the space domain, and provide critical capabilities to the joint force in accordance with the 2022, national defense strategy in our insulation has been through instruction, and operations and maintenance funding are especially vital to the space force mission because the bulk of our forces are employed and are insulation serve as our power projection platforms braided and a space for space sensations also serve as home to many of our guardians hand deporting airmen and their
1:58 pm
families we work ceaselessly to provide them safe and countable place to live in and then lying with the guiding principle of one team and one fight, and we will remain partnered with the air force as it provides foundational installation supports to the space force. and i remain a lien and omissions - as directed by congress and in accordance with our chief of space operations, planning guidance, the space force will continue to rely on the air force with infrastructure logistics, security medical services, and host of other support functions at our basis and formally implementation plans are in place to codify cycle rules and response abilities we play resilience and or mission operations and protect the guardians airmen and families stationed in location from severe weather risk and additionally active partners in
1:59 pm
the partners facility and infrastructure initiative and participate in the energy and water resilience conversations across the department. this pastor, the space force developed an independent process for prioritizing requirements for deliberate collaborative planning efforts that accounts for operational and community priorities some pretty we are focused on structure improvements in areas to reduce risk to mission, while simultaneously reducing risk to the force by improving the quality of life regarding supporting airmen and their families in our insulation investment military construction program and operation made account enter collaborative relationships across the department of the air force especially with the general's office are critical to performing or mission into the well-being of a guardians and supporting airmen and their families and thank you for your time, and continued support and i'm truly honored for the opportunity to testify today i look forward to our dialogue.
2:00 pm
>> thank you mr. hollywood and general evans and general barry, hannah fiscal year 22 bill we included 125 million pretty sign both minor and major construction of laboratory infrastructure to modernize our research development testing, and evaluation based on this funding help buydown unfunded requirements and installations across the country including missile range, and said we know there to be a significant need for such funding as it pertains to the military construction, how are you identifying and prior to prioritizing the laboratory infrastructure. >> laboratories in particular very imported and we have to have laboratories in the walter reed dha will fund for critical medical research, and we have to laboratories, redstone and
2:01 pm
pittsburgh and we have another five and a total of eight and so this is vitally important to us. >> in the fy 22 section 129, about 20 million of the one and 25 million that was now appropriated from a 5 million, we have in place and we are still working to spend it but it was like we will get to seventh test projects that we will be planning a design. across air force to get to the critical capabilities for the testing evaluation enterprise anything if you look across our flight as well you will see that for example just in hypersonic testing infrastructure, cross fy 22 open about three and $36 million into that test structure will but that is a huge investment for us and recognizing the importance of the mission. >> for lt. gen. jason evans the
2:02 pm
army climate strategy released earlier this year, lays out a pretty ambitious objective of installing a microgrid in every insulation by 2035 and most of the funding for the army over the past few years has focused on microgrids and how are you determining the order in which installations are prioritized what are some of the significant challenges you anticipate facing in trying to get to that objective. >> so right now, installation and their internal energy and water plants in assessment and they determine the criticality of the need for microgrids we did five vaster were scheduled to 12 programs this year and 11 of which microgrids and another five next year. we are absolutely invested in this technology is you've mentioned before, and estate for
2:03 pm
energy conservation so we think that it has the ability to pursue the electric vehicle fleet and so we are all and. >> it's my understanding theaters design funding including in the request this year for a microgrid at the white plains missile range and can you confirm. >> yes we do have roughly $29 million for the planning and design for that range. >> excellent and mr. hollywood, last year i included design funding that space rapid capabilities at the air force base and i'm pleased the full funding for the construction project has been identified in the 500 and hope design is able to get away from get underway soon understand the space force is now dedicated obligation authority within the air force topline and as they carve out
2:04 pm
its own military construction program, could you discuss how you are identifying developing and advertising those projects within that program. >> thank you for the question and thank you very much for the funding for the space or co and that will be an important piece of our technology and billing going forward. as we work within the department of the air force, it is a single funding stream and that gives the secretary the flexibility to perhaps give us more in this times when we need a little bit more in the balance it across but the way that we prioritize by trying to reduce risk to the mission and the effectiveness of the mission by looking at resilience and readiness are turning in infrastructure and
2:05 pm
then by reducing the risk to our people fight working on our quality of life initiatives thank you i asked this question to the first panel and i would really like to get your input also uses some very important and we really just in a unique time right now for our economic factors such as extreme market volatility and record inflation in your fiscal year 23 budget request to the project executions, what is your plan to address this cost increase and very importantly, what can we do to help you. >> thank you for the question and we have experienced a over the last year about 24 percent increase from milk on projects which is really attributed it to the labor supply line and materials and down, were experiencing with an increase in
2:06 pm
30 percent we work with the core engineers in with this is done as we are no longer having to contracted just help build bids before we have them poker that's about six months until we have the authorized reprogramming and is no longer the case and so what you will see the 23 is about 22 cost to complete about half of the projects had that's a result of the cost increases that we believe like the navy that we can work with your staff say to probably get them authorized special reprogramming breaking try to reduce the time to hold the contractor simply see the big on that soon a good. >> thank you and i think my answer will mimic a lot of of my navy and army kevin hart uncertainly continue resolutions and they are not helpful for us because of delays or ability to advertise in the construction business time is money that does tend to lead us to higher bids
2:07 pm
than what we would've originally anticipated a. >> that is definitely noted. >> clearly as i mentioned my opening comments, level planning and design now and much more rigorous in our process from planning and design do you project to 35 percent so that they are more mature so we can continue providing have a higher competence level and it will cost we think it will cost know without a doubt there are inflationary pressures on us today that we have not seen before. why we have taken a large portion of our professional engineers come about 1200 so far put them through cost estimate he versus improve their capabilities there to do cost estimating, sometimes you cannot predict all of those inflationary pressures and they are real seals up 110 percent in aluminum is up about 34 percent in just comes to a roost when the contractors give their bids. and i will echo what was said
2:08 pm
before and it may be time to look at the reprogramming thresholds and i think the last time that we did a reprogramming a threshold change was 1982 have a reference i was a high school senior and enough that anymore and i think gas was a dollar 30 a gallon card is not hard to exceeded $2 million threshold in today's environment given the complexity and then add to it, the increase in pressures from inflation and attends to eat into those project costs quickly so certainly, i think air force would welcome a conversation about looking at this reprogramming thresholds again and thank you. >> there is really not a whole lot to add to what is been said and we benefit from all the hard work the air force has done in recent years on refining the bidding process and it set as right is it can be reported even begins construction that any help with multitier funding, and
2:09 pm
increasing the thresholds it would be extremely helpful that even the small we are we have projects that have been impacted by having to come back and be delayed during a reprogramming action. >> very good and thank you and the lt. gen. jason evans, over the past few years, multiple issues with the privatize housing, really following up on the senator remarks earlier and you and i've had great discussions about this and i know the nobody cares more about this than you do and taking care of the men and women who are serving but again privatize housing and barracks in the last few weeks the army has had some tough questions that other hearings on quality-of-life investments or lack there future the army's investment strategy and what you're doing to improve the housing for the soldiers. >> thank you for the question and so we talk to the housing and privatize housing and army on housing in the pharynx is
2:10 pm
number one priority under the quality-of-life initiative for the army. we currently for the berries we have a tenure milk on our an implant that address over 1600 barracks antedate and 21 - 22, that will be about 10.3 billion and we for that in no and to berries are in the program for 23, along with 78 r&m projects because we believe the r&m is just as important as the military construction for the privatized ozzie, we continue to hold ourselves accountable as well as private partners so for performance and we've implemented the bill of rights across the 44 installations that have privatize housing right now we have a couple of partners that have invested about $3 billion to build new homes that works for in places like fort hood in about 586 homes for places like fort campbell and
2:11 pm
fort army owned housing, about 93 percent of that is overseas and were investing about $1.5 million and that much needed places like the housing area and so, to add to that i would like to throwing also the childcare because that's an important facility investment or capacity issue that we have the army and rethinking many for their support for three of the childcare facilities and 21 that part. i areas are high demand areas like alaska and hawaii in the last year you gave us one fort leavenworth one box and then we have seven more in the program so were very appreciative of the support of the committee and then we think we want a good path of increasing capacity which okay are along with incentivizing the staff and the family childcare homes and by providing thousand dollars for people to get into that with the assistance program the monthly
2:12 pm
fee assistance for folks who take advantage of that, from 1500 - 1700. so were static about where we are going with increasing the capacity for all of those. >> that is a good story. >> thank you and lt. gen. jason evans i was glad to hear your response to senator boozman and focus on childcare and what were to provide for our families and the number one item listed on army's unfunded priorities list is a new multipurpose fieldhouse physical fitness facility. i think we recognize maybe is not self apparent in a place like arkansas where your weather is wendy mostly times the required level of readiness and
2:13 pm
you cannot just be out jogging when it is 40 below and getting the fitness training that you need without appropriate facilities and so, i appreciate the focus on the attention that is been made to this fieldhouse and this fitness facility and were all very very targeted what we are seeing with alarming rates of suicide and we recognize that when we provided for certain quality-of-life initiatives whether this healthcare fitness centers, these are just not not to have, this is part of what our soldiers needed i had an opportunity at a recent hearing to hear from the secretary as well as the chief of staff of the army on the importance of this particular facility up north and i asked the question
2:14 pm
about why this fitness facility is needed and why it is number one on the unfunded priorities list and also i asked about the price tag because we sit here on this committee and $99 million that figure will get the attention itself and i would like you to for the record, provide to this committee why it is your number one unfunded priority and to the issue of cost, we recognize that is just more expensive to build up north but i don't want people to think that this is some taj mahal that what we are doing, we are building necessary facility that i would like to you to speak to that if you would. >> yes and thank you for the question and personal, had the opportunity to travel to alaska and winter months the vice chief of staff of the army and is kind of dark there for a longer period of time and kinda dark
2:15 pm
your head is extreme weather conditions and it is not lending itself to the soldiers performing physical exercise outside. physical fitness center gives the soldier resiliency and fitness and the ability to be ready, combat ready and physically ready because they perform the test indoors pretty in the price tag, the cost factor is much higher there in alaska because it is only from early spring to early fall, that's the only time that you can really conduct construction. where in planning and design phase now, and we have early 24 for completion and were ecstatic about this and is the chief of staff number one priority because he gets directly to our number one priority people and supporting the soldiers hand you mentioned the issues we've had up there and we think that this is something that gets right at
2:16 pm
that in terms of resiliency and fitness for the soldiers. >> we appreciate that were looking forward to seeing that completion return to you the tenant general very, and now home to the 54f35, where we are looking at areas within the budget request and there is an absence in my view when it comes to increased storage and coverings to protect from these winter climates and you not only can't train other bits not really was tough on those airplanes and aircraft and we are going to get for additional 135's and in addition to the f35, but what i'm hearing is we just do not have enough anger since storage to safely accommodate this influx of aircraft and equipment.
2:17 pm
i am told that air force often uses off-base civilian storage to rent space for luggage exercises and we have the only good but it is becoming more challenging i guess it's less reliable as a civilian companies are increasingly utilizing their own space and so, i do not know if you can speak to whether or not the air force currently has a plan to address the shortfall for future military construction projects if you are looking at the issue of anger and storage space in the arctic and what you can share their. ..
2:18 pm
how we view the situation. we also had an fy 20 a project to build storage facilities for >> that project is underway to provide some indoor storage for those support equipment requirements for the f. we will have to take a closer look and see what that requirement will be. those airplanes will not arrive until fy 23. we will go back to make sure we have that ground covered as well. as far as arctic edge, i will have to get back to on that when i have not heard about that as
2:19 pm
an offbeat storage for the particular exercise. local backup makes that squared in that corner is weber. >> i appreciate that particular as it relates to to the casie 135 there and anticipating their arrival. thank you for that. mr. chairman i am out of time. i do want to just note to mr. hollywood my appreciation that this year's budget request does include this dormitory to house 84 guardians that clear air force station. i think it was recognized in the budget this place is with the most strategically important installations in our country. we know that but we also have to have a place to house our guardians of their at the air
2:20 pm
force station. the community just does not have a lot of housing but certainly know that and you do as well. we are pleased to see that addition. >> thank you for your support, set up a. >> thank you, mr. chairman. >> senator hogan. >> knew the chairman of firewood that ranking member when you switch parties. [laughter] x behavior. it. [laughter] >> thank you, mr. chairman. [laughter] my firstuestion is for general evans. we expected the jamestown readiness center which is 817 engineer company staff. we expected they would be and you tell me how come they are not and when they are going to be? >> thank you for the question sir. we prioritize based on the army simulators in the top line. i will go back to see where that
2:21 pm
project is for 24, server. >> yes that was their number one ask we need to get them in hyper should that very much if you would. that also the line of communications bridge, can you tell me where you are in terms of the training capability? are you familiar with that? >> i'm not but i the answer that question. okay. we included in the build, report language directing you to establish a training pipeline for that program. so if you would check on that and let us know. >> yes, sir. >> thank you general. general barry, air force base is the only base that has a dual nuclear mission. but the b-52 bombers with the nuclear weapon and also icbms.
2:22 pm
we need a new weapons facility. my question is where are we in turn of the design and getting that new facility underway? >> yes senator. we agree with you. there is a need for weapons generation facility. it is not yet. as we discussed i think last year the complexity of this particular weapons generation facility having to do with large muscles and bomber make it uniquely difficult program and project to design and then build. our strategy since the lessons we can learn from the big missile bases in that design on blast containment and fire suppression those are future design so we can correct those which are have robust designs in the future. in the bomber bases learning
2:23 pm
from those construction efforts as to what will be a good design for something that gets very complexed because of those missions. we will get to but we are committed but our strategy is to learn those lessons first. >> your action moving forward on both of us who tell me you're going to build a deficient facility for the nuclear bomb rents i don't understand why you don't use those designs and proceed. it seems like more of a reason to push it back. >> will use those. quick starting when? >> we don't have it right now. i think we still need to auteur the design on parksville and ellsworth to make sure understand what that facility looks like. and as we said we learned some
2:24 pm
lessons there with the blast suppression i'm sorry blast containment and fire suppression that change the design. and so those lessons are very important for us to learn before we start putting designs together for a complex facility like north dakota. >> ranking member i guess it chairman or i work hard to support the b21. i'm putting a weapons they get to the b21. which move them ahead of my air force base we are reengineering the b-52. that will carry the same weapons system. they are all ahead of us in terms of getting weapons generated facility as well as the other missile bases. i keep getting these rationales that were going to learn from everybody else. why don't we start building something minor air force base and learn for the minor air force base? the only dual nuclear base were behind everybody else. we keep getting pushed back
2:25 pm
that's not acceptable but. >> i can come talk to you and what about the lessons we are learning why we think that is a good strategy. would be happy to dive into those details for apricot let's do that thank you. on gray wolf this when you are progressing on. i do thank you for that. if you could please give me an update on the hanger helicopter. also make sure he funded new helicopters for the missiles. i need a place to house them. the curate qa's are older fantastic air force pilots that are flying them. yes, sir, sadly true. the facility is certainly out for bid. those bids should close the end of may for the that facility per the go through the selection process with think they'll be done later in the summer. divorce last year i think i told were trying to reconcile the build was coming in higher than we thought because of inflation for a quick 7,466,000,000 we add
2:26 pm
another five plus million but. >> we did we think will go higher than that. i'll drive another reprogramming much of the inflation of the. >> will work with you to get up you got to prioritize it. >> we will actually prioritize our prudent >> depth to be awarded in march of 23 the first helicopter coming fy 27 peru think that's pretty good timing but we are committed to that. >> is the only dual air force base we need more security work on the front gate which is nothing work with you andre. >> yes or will continue to work with the inflation commander up there. that being said i think all of you and to appreciate all of you for what you do it's we really appreciate thanks so much for your service. thank you, mr. chairman. >> thank you. on behalf of chairman heinrich and myself we want to thank both panels of witnesses for the senators who participated today in today's hearing i look forward to working together on
2:27 pm
this year's appropriations to ensure we are providing the department service members and their families with the military construction and family housing resources that they need i know you're all totally committed to that regard also. finally will keep the hearing record open for one week. committee members who would like to find committee for the record should be able to do so by 5:00 p.m. wednesday may 25. we appreciate the department responding to them in a recent period of time and again thank you all very much for being here. thank you for your represented without were adjourned.
2:28 pm
[background noises] [background noises] [background noises] [background noises]
2:29 pm
[background noises] [background noises] [background noises]
2:30 pm
[background noises] >> c-span's washington journal, every day we take your calls live on the air come on the news of the day. we discussed policy issues that impact you. coming up sunday we look at the rise in covid cases with dr. shatner of vanderbilt university medical center. jessica taylor with the political reports on the upcoming primary season and key center races to watch in the fall midterm election. watch washington journal live at 7:00 eastern on c-span, c-span now, join the discussion with your phone calls, facebook comments texts and tweets. >> the u.s. house returns after its memorial day break on tuesday, june 7. for legislative business and
2:31 pm
votes. on the other set of the u.s. capitol the senate returns on tuesday 10:00 eastern. lawmakers will vote whether to begin a debate on terrorism legislation following the mass shooting in buffalo. senators will vote on more -- president bidens nominations, former homeland advisor, president george w. bush to serve as for intelligence and analysis in the biden administration's homeland security department. watch live coverage of the senate on c-span2, online on or on our free c-span video app. >> after months of closed-door investigations the house january 6 committee is set to go public. starting june 9 tune in as committee members question key
2:32 pm
witnesses about what transpired and why, during the assault on the u.s. capitol. watch our live coverage beginning thursday, june 9 on c-span, c-span now, our free mobile video app or anytime online at c-span, your unfiltered view of government. >> c-span now is a free mobile app featuring your unfiltered view of what is happening in washington live and on-demand. keep up with the day's biggest events with live streams of floor proceedings and hearings from the u.s. congress, white house events, the courts, campaigns and more from the world of politics all at your fingertips. also stay current with the latest episodes of washington journal and find scheduling information for c-span's network and c-span radio, plus a variety of podcasts. c-span now is available on the apple store, and google play. download for free today.
2:33 pm
c-span your front row seat to washington anytime, anywhere. >> there are a lot of places to get political information. but only at c-span do you get it straight from the source. no matter where you're from, or where you stand on the issues, c-span is america's network. unfiltered, unbiased, port for word, if it happens here, or here or here, or anywhere that matters, america is watching on c-span. powered by cable.


info Stream Only

Uploaded by TV Archive on