HASC Backs Army’s Unfunded Priorities

HASC Backs Army’s Unfunded Priorities

Abrams training
Photo by: U.S. Army/Sgt. Brayton Daniel

The 2024 defense policy bill taking shape in the House of Representatives allocates almost $4.4 billion toward Army weapons and combat vehicles, about $620 million more than requested by the Pentagon.

The draft 2024 defense plan prepared by House Armed Services Committee Chairman Rep. Mike Rogers of Alabama includes several increases in Army procurement. He proposes a $230 million increase for aircraft, and a $623 million increase for weapons and tracked combat vehicles.

His proposal will be taken up by the full committee June 21 as lawmakers write their version of the fiscal 2024 National Defense Authorization Act. Armed services subcommittees have already written their portions of the annual policy bill.

Rogers’ adjustments appear to take into consideration the Army’s list of $1.93 billion in unfunded priorities in addition to the service’s $185.5 billion budget request by the Pentagon. Abrams tank upgrades and additional funding for helicopters were part of the Army’s request for additional funds.

In a statement, Rogers said his proposed changes are designed to focus on what he sees as the top defense priorities. “It is crucial that we ensure our service members have access to the resources and weapons they need to be successful on any battlefield,” he said, describing his adjustments as boosting innovation and preparing the military with “the tools necessary to counter the unprecedented threats our nation faces from China, Russia, North Korea and Iran.”

As part of this shift, Rogers would spend less money on operations maintenance, facilities and personnel programs than requested by the Pentagon. Details of the funding shift have not been determined.