Stimulus Bill Moves Towards Final Stages

February 12, 2009

Government Relations Update - Defense

Following Senate approval of H.R. 1, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 on Tuesday by a vote of 61-37, congressional negotiators moved swiftly to reconcile competing differences between the House and Senate versions of the bill in conference committee—ultimately striking a deal that shrinks the total size of the stimulus package to $789 billion, likely assuring congressional passage in the coming days.

Currently, funding levels cannot be officially confirmed since Congress has not yet filed its conference report language as of 3 p.m. However, below are two charts showing the projected Department of Defense (DoD), Department of Homeland Security (DHS) and Department of Veterans’ Affairs (VA) funding within the conference report of H.R. 1 in comparison to key funding figures contained within the House and Senate-passed versions.  Overall, the bill will likely provide $4.6 billion for DoD, $4.1 billion for Military Construction and the VA,and $2.8 billion for DHS.

DoD/VA Projects

House

Senate

Conference

DoD Military Construction

$1.6 billion

$2.5 billion

$2.76 billion

DoD Facility  Renovations

$4.5 billion

$2.98 billion

$4.24 billion

DoD Family Housing Construction/Operations & Management

None

$120 million

None

DoD  - Energy Conservation Investment Program

$3.75 billion

$119 million

$120 million

DoD Military Construction - Guard and Reserve Facilities

$400 million

$260 million

None

VA Construction

None

$2 billion

$1 billion

 

DHS Projects

House

Senate

Conference

Accelerate Procurement and Installation of Airport Security Equipment.

$500 million

$1 billion

$1 billion

Coast Guard  Construction and Repairs

$150 million

$690 million

$240 million

Port of Entry Construction

$150 million

$800 million

$700 million

Critical Infrastructure (Dams, Tunnels and Bridges)

None

$500 million

None

Transit and Rail Security

None

$100 million

$300 million

Competitive Grants to Construct State and Local Emergency Operations Centers/Fusion Centers

None

$250 million

None

Border Technology

None

$200 million

None

DHS Consolidation

None

$198 million

$200 million

Competitive Grants to Construct Fire Stations

None

$500 million

$210 million


Lynn, top DoD Nominees Approved by Senate

Yesterday, the Senate voted 93-4 to confirm William J. Lynn as the Deputy Secretary of Defense, bringing to a close a confirmation process that faced unexpected controversy on Capitol Hill due to a presidential executive order.  

During the process, a handful of senators expressed concern that President Obama’s executive order—imposing a two-year moratorium on lobbyists entering the administration from engaging in policy or with government agencies to which they formerly lobbied—would hinder Lynn’s ability to effectively serve as the DoD’s second-in-command, due to his history as a former lobbyist for Raytheon Co. However, on January 23, the Obama administration issued a waiver to Lynn and outlined an ethics process that appeased a majority of lawmakers.

Earlier in the week, the Senate also unanimously confirmed Robert Hale as Undersecretary of Defense (comptroller) and Chief Financial Officer; Michèle Flournoy as Undersecretary of Defense for Policy; and Jeh Johnson as DoD general counsel.


Notice: The purpose of this newsletter is to identify select developments that may be of interest to readers. The information contained herein is abridged and summarized from various sources, the accuracy and completeness of which cannot be assured. This alert should not be construed as legal advice or opinion, and is not a substitute for the advice of counsel.