AUSA Urges Timely, Adequate Defense Budget

AUSA Urges Timely, Adequate Defense Budget

US Capitol
Photo by: Architect of the Capitol

The Association of the U.S. Army joined with five other military associations to urge Congress to approve a timely and adequate defense budget to avoid disruptions to critical modernization and people programs.

“As you know, our nation faces many threats, including responding to the Russian invasion of Ukraine, Chinese aggression in the Pacific, Iranian and North Korean malign activities, the impact of inflation, and domestic response to floods and wildfires—which makes timely and sufficient appropriations all the more important,” the associations say in the Aug. 30 letter to the top four leaders of the Senate and the House of Representatives. “If a continuing resolution (CR) is required to avert a damaging government shutdown, it should be a short one.”

Continuing resolutions, which are stopgap measures that allow federal programs to continue at current spending levels, “diminish national security and the capabilities of the Armed Forces (both Regular and Reserve Components) by hurting readiness, modernization, and quality of life programs—while negatively impacting our service members and their families,” says the letter signed by retired Gen. Bob Brown, AUSA president and CEO.

Brown is joined by retired Air Force Master Sgt. Daniel Reilly, president of the Enlisted Association of the National Guard of the United States; Stuart Bradin, president and CEO of the Global Special Operations Forces Foundation; retired Brig. Gen. J. Roy Robinson, president of the National Guard Association of the United States; retired Maj. Gen. Jeffrey Phillips, executive director of the Reserve Organization of America; and Cara Rinkoff, executive director of the U.S. Army Warrant Officers Association.

Under a continuing resolution, the services cannot start new programs or increase their investments in modernization priorities, the letter says. “At a time when recruitment presents a significant challenge across the Armed Forces, full and timely funding is necessary,” the letter says as it urges the congressional leaders to pass all 12 fiscal 2024 appropriations bills “as soon as possible” and “add additional funding for national security priorities.”

“This will provide the predictability and resources commensurate with the demonstrated need and the urgency that our national security challenges require, and our veterans have earned,” the letter says.

Fiscal year 2024 begins Oct. 1.

Read the full letter here.