Army Lists $7 Billion in Unfunded Priorities
The Army has compiled a wish list of $7 billion in unfunded priorities, led by $3.9 billion that might be needed for overseas contingency operations if force reduction assumptions built into the fiscal 2021 budget are not fully realized.
The request is in addition to the $178 billion Army budget already submitted to Congress. The annual list of unfunded priorities is required by Congress as a tool for legislators should they find additional money for defense spending. There are no guarantees lawmakers will provide additional funds, nor that additional funds, if found, would be spent on fulfilling the Army’s unfunded priorities.
The unfunded requirements list provided to Congress also includes $1.4 billion for infrastructure, with a $942,000 request for 33 military construction projects and $409 million for facility sustainment that includes repairing or replacing plumbing, air conditioning and heating systems, stairwells, roofs and fire safety sprinkler systems. This money would be spread across Regular Army, Army National Guard and Army Reserve facilities.
The Army list also contains $985 million for modernization requirements, with the purchase of 60 upgraded Stryker double V-hull vehicles and eight new AH-64 Apache aircraft accounting for about $658 million of the request.
Additionally, the Army lists $538 million for “people requirements” and $294 million for “readiness requirements.”
People requirements include $194 million for child development centers, divided between construction, planning and improvement of kitchens and playgrounds. There also is $142 million for six soldier housing projects and $92 million for improvements in existing soldier housing.
The readiness request includes $151 million to support multidomain tasks forces in Europe and the Pacific and $97 million to improve living conditions for about 2,000 U.S. soldiers now in tents in Poland.