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Status of Funds for the Merida Initiative

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Violence along the U.S.-Mexico border has escalated in recent years because of drug trafficking and related organized crime activities, with over 12,000 fatalities since 2006. At the same time, gang activity in Central America has increased, further fueling the violence within the region. In an effort to confront the challenges posed by criminal violence, in October 2007, the United States and Mexico announced the Merida Initiative, a $1.4 billion counternarcotics and anticrime assistance package for countries in the region. The Merida Initiative brings a shift in both scale and scope to U.S. assistance to the region, particularly Mexico. For example, under Merida, the average annual counternarcotics and related law enforcement assistance to Mexico increased from about $57 million from 2000 through 2006 to $400 million for fiscal year 2008. Similarly, collaboration between the United States and Mexico has intensified, providing an unprecedented opportunity to address the mutual threat of drug trafficking and organized crime affecting the region. In response to Congressional concerns regarding the pace of assistance, we are providing information on the status of funding provided under the Merida Initiative as of September 30, 2009. Specifically, we describe how much has been appropriated, obligated, and expended. We also identify factors affecting the delivery of major equipment, services, and training; and we provide a timeline of key events related to the initiative. On the basis of Congressional request, we are also conducting a more comprehensive programmatic review of the Merida Initiative to be completed in the summer of 2010. To determine the status of the Merida Initiative assistance funds, we reviewed the Department of State's (State) spending plans for Merida; State budget documents; bilateral agreements between the United States and Mexico, the United States and each of the ...
Date: December 3, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

High-Level Leadership Needed to Help Guam Address Challenges Caused by DOD-Related Growth

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "In an effort to improve the U.S. military's flexibility to address conventional and terrorist threats worldwide, the Department of Defense (DOD) plans to relocate more than 8,000 Marines and an estimated 9,000 dependents from Okinawa, Japan, to Guam as well as expand other U.S. force capabilities on the island at an estimated cost of more than $13 billion. Guam is an integral part of DOD's logistical support system and serves as an important forward operational hub for a mix of military mission requirements. According to DOD, Guam provides strategic flexibility, freedom of action, and prompt global action for the Global War on Terrorism, peace and wartime engagement, and crisis response. DOD plans to begin construction on Guam during fiscal year 2010 in order to meet the desired buildup deadline of fiscal year 2014 indicated in the agreement reached by the U.S.-Japan Security Consultative Committee on October 29, 2005. As a result of the military buildup, Guam's current population of 171,000 will increase by an estimated 25,000 active duty military personnel and dependents (or 14.6 percent), to 196,000. In addition, the realignment will require additional workers to move to the island, including non-defense personnel, DOD contractors, and transient military personnel. As such, the U.S. military realignment and buildup will substantially impact Guam's community and infrastructure. DOD and representatives for Guam have expressed concern that Guam's infrastructure and social services will not be prepared to handle the impacts of the buildup by the 2014 completion date because of the compressed timeline and the extensive impact of the buildup. Further, GAO previously reported that the Government of Guam faces significant challenges in addressing the impacts of the buildup and realignment. Although DOD plans to fund infrastructure requirements directly related to the ...
Date: April 9, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Overseas Contingency Operations: Reported Obligations for the Department of Defense

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Since 2001, Congress has provided the Department of Defense (DOD) with $888 billion in supplemental and annual appropriations, as of June 2009, primarily for Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO). DOD's reported annual obligations for OCO have shown a steady increase from about $0.2 billion in fiscal year 2001 to about $162.4 billion in fiscal year 2008. For fiscal year 2009 OCO, Congress provided DOD with about $65.9 billion in the fiscal year 2009 DOD Appropriations Act and about $80.0 billion in a supplemental appropriation enacted in June 2009. A total of $59.6 billion has been obligated through the second quarter of fiscal year 2009 through March 2009. The United States' commitments to OCO will likely involve the continued investment of significant resources, requiring decision makers to consider difficult trade-offs as the nation faces an increasing long-range fiscal challenge. The magnitude of future costs will depend on several direct and indirect cost variables and, in some cases, decisions that have not yet been made. DOD's future costs will likely be affected by the pace and duration of operations, the types of facilities needed to support troops overseas, redeployment plans, and the amount of equipment to be repaired or replaced. DOD compiles and reports monthly and cumulative incremental obligations incurred to support OCO in a monthly report commonly called the Contingency Operations Status of Funds Report. DOD leadership uses this report, along with other information, to advise Congress on the costs of the war and to formulate future OCO budget requests. DOD reports these obligations by appropriation, contingency operation, and military service or defense agency. DOD has prepared monthly reports on the obligations incurred for its involvement in OCO since fiscal year 2001. Section 1221 of the National Defense Authorization Act ...
Date: July 10, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Military Training: Navy and Air Force Need to More Fully Apply Best Practices to Enhance Development and Management of Combat Skills Training

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Since September 11, 2001, U.S. military forces have sought to adapt to an expanded battlefield--one in which rear areas are no longer considered safe and secure. As a result, both the Navy and the Air Force determined that, in order to prepare to operate more effectively in combat, servicemembers in specific occupations required additional standardized combat skills training in such areas as land navigation, first aid, and weapons qualification. The Navy has developed and implemented the Expeditionary Combat Skills (ECS) course for select Navy Expeditionary Combat Command (NECC) personnel. Through ECS, NECC intended to standardize the training curricula and eliminate inefficiencies and wide divergences in existing combat skills training. To provide similar training to designated enlisted personnel, the Air Force began planning the Common Battlefield Airmen Training (CBAT) program, but decided to cancel the program in August 2008, which was during the course of our work. Despite the Air Force's decision, we included in this report an analysis of CBAT to identify lessons learned applicable to ongoing and future Air Force efforts to establish new training programs."
Date: January 28, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Briefing on Air Force's Response on Fee-For-Service Aerial Refueling

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Section 1081 of the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008 calls for the Secretary of the Air Force to conduct a pilot program to assess the feasibility and advisability of utilizing commercial fee-for-service air refueling tanker aircraft for Air Force operations. In response to your May 2009 letter to the Secretary of the Air Force requesting an update on the status of this pilot program, the Air Force submitted the Status of the Pilot Program on Commercial Fee-For-Service Air Refueling Support for the Air Force on August 7, 2009."
Date: October 5, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Warfighter Support: Information on Army and Marine Corps Ground Combat Helmet Pads

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Combat soldiers operate in diverse environments and face injury threats that place demands on the protective equipment systems they use to provide consistent protection throughout a range of temperatures and threat magnitudes. Protective helmets are one of those systems. In addition to protecting against ballistic threats, Army and Marine Corps ground combat helmets are now designed to absorb energy in order to reduce head injury risk from blunt impacts; previous combat helmets, such as the Personnel Armor System for Ground Troops helmet in use until 2002, were not designed to provide any tested levels of blunt impact protection. The currently used Army Advanced Combat Helmet and Marine Corps Light Weight Helmet are outfitted with a pad suspension system to protect against these threats. These pad suspension systems have been found to offer superior blunt impact protection over the older sling suspension systems. The Explanatory Statement accompanying the Consolidated Security, Disaster Assistance, and Continuing Appropriations Act of 2009 directed GAO to review ground combat helmet pads. In response, this report focuses on two objectives: (1) Who currently provides the pads used in Army and Marine Corps ground combat helmets, and how were they chosen? and (2) What efforts and research have been undertaken by the Army and Marine Corps to improve helmet pad performance and helmet technology? In addition, we have included information on servicemembers' use of helmet pads that are not approved."
Date: July 28, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Logistics: Information on the Test and Evaluation and Assignment and Cancellation of National Stock Numbers as It Relates to MILITEC-1

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The purpose of this letter is to respond to Congressional request for information regarding the test and evaluation process conducted by the Department of Defense (DOD) of a specific synthetic lubricant called MILITEC-1 that is produced by Militec, Inc., and the assignment and cancellation of national stock numbers2 (NSN) associated with that product. Militec, Inc., has challenged DOD decisions not to include MILITEC-1 in the federal supply system. Specifically, we examined (1) the extent to which the military services have tested and evaluated MILITEC-1 as a small arms lubricant, as a metal conditioner, as a general purpose lubricant, and as a lubricant additive, and with what results; and (2) the extent to which the Defense Logistics Agency (DLA) followed applicable DOD procedures in assigning and subsequently canceling national stock numbers to MILITEC-1. In addition, we are providing in enclosure I a timeline on the efforts to test and evaluate, and assign and cancel, NSNs for MILITEC-1. MILITEC-1 is a dry, impregnated, synthetic-based metal conditioner that, at the time of our review, has been primarily marketed as a small arms lubricant, although it is also marketed as an automotive and transportation lubricant. The product is packaged in several container sizes and is available for commercial purchase. According to DOD officials, in order for a product to be approved for use on small arms it must fulfill DOD's performance specifications by meeting a number of laboratory and live fire test requirements developed by the Army, which has cognizance across DOD for the specification for cleaner, lubricant, and preservative properties in small arms lubricants. Once a product has been approved and the services have determined that they have sufficient projected demand for the product, the services request that DLA assign the ...
Date: June 25, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Acquisitions: Army Aviation Modernization Has Benefited from Increased Funding but Several Challenges Need to Be Addressed

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The Army's current efforts to transform and modernize its aviation assets began in 1999, seeking to maintain and improve the warfighting capabilities of the existing force as well as to invest in science and technology in a way that improved the future force. To accomplish these goals, the Army focused on upgrading and modernizing existing equipment, rapidly fielding new equipment, incorporating new technologies as they became available, and restructuring aviation warfighting units. Initially, fielding the developmental Comanche helicopter was a key focus of modernization, but when the Comanche program was terminated in 2004, an investment strategy was presented to Congress that would redistribute $14.6 billion of planned Comanche funding through fiscal year 2011 to enhance a broad range of Army aviation modernization efforts. Furthermore, the Army is currently re-evaluating the plans that were established in 2004 by conducting several assessments, tracking progress, and assessing future capability requirements, and intends to develop an updated Aviation Modernization Plan in 2010. Given this, Congress asked us to determine: (1) What is the Army's current investment strategy for its aviation forces? (2) How do the current aviation plans differ from the initial post-Comanche plans and what are the causes of the differences? (3) What challenges does the current investment strategy face?"
Date: September 28, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Infrastructure: Guam Needs Timely Information from DOD to Meet Challenges in Planning and Financing Off-Base Projects and Programs to Support a Larger Military Presence

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The Department of Defense's (DOD) plans to increase the U.S. military presence on Guam are expected to increase the island's current military population by about two and a half times by 2020. If implemented as planned, this realignment would increase the military population on Guam from about 15,000 in 2009 to about 29,000 in 2014, and to more than 39,000 by 2020, which will increase the current island population of 178,430 by about 14 percent over those years. The government of Guam established the Civilian-Military Task Force in April 2006 to identify and develop cost estimates for potential nondefense projects and programs needed to support the larger military presence. To determine the processes used by the government of Guam to develop cost estimates for off-base projects and programs to support a larger military and civilian population resulting from the military buildup, the Government Accountability Office (GAO) obtained and analyzed studies and assessments used by the government of Guam to develop the cost estimates. GAO also examined the government of Guam's fiscal year 2010 budget request. GAO conducted this performance audit from March 2009 through November 2009 in accordance with generally accepted government auditing standards. Those standards require that GAO plan and perform the audit to obtain sufficient, appropriate evidence to provide a reasonable basis for GAO's findings and conclusions based on their audit objectives."
Date: November 13, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Acquisitions: Perspectives on Potential Changes to Department of Defense Acquisition Management Framework

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2008 directed GAO to report on potential modifications of the organization and structure of the Department of Defense (DOD) for Major Defense Acquisition Programs (MDAP). In preparing the report, the review was required to include the feasibility and advisability of seven potential modifications of DOD's organization and structure for MDAPs. We were charged with reporting on the feasibility and advisability of (1) establishing a process in which the commanders of combatant commands (COCOM) assess and provide input on the capabilities needed to successfully accomplish their missions over a long-term planning horizon of 15 years or more; (2) establishing a materiel solutions process for addressing identified gaps in critical warfighting capabilities, under which the Under Secretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology, and Logistics (USD (AT&L)) circulates among the military departments and appropriate defense agencies requests for proposals for technologies and systems to address such gaps; (3) revising the acquisition process by establishing shorter, more frequent acquisition program milestones; (4) requiring the milestone decision authority (MDA) to specify at the time of milestone B approval the period of time that will be required to deliver an initial operational capability (IOC) to the commanders of the relevant COCOMs; (5) establishing a new office to provide independent cost and performance estimates; (6) requiring certifications of program status to the Defense Acquisition Executive (DAE) and Congress prior to milestone approval; and (7) modifying the role played by Chiefs of Staff of the Armed Forces in the requirements, resource allocation, and acquisition processes. In carrying out this review, as Congress directed, we obtained the views of current and prior senior DOD acquisition officials, currently serving senior military officers involved in setting requirements, and other experts ...
Date: February 27, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Global War on Terrorism: Reported Obligations for the Department of Defense

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Since 2001, Congress has provided the Department of Defense (DOD) with about $808 billion in supplemental and annual appropriations, as of March 2009, primarily for military operations in support of the Global War on Terrorism (GWOT). DOD's reported annual obligations for GWOT have shown a steady increase from about $0.2 billion in fiscal year 2001 to about $162.4 billion in fiscal year 2008. For fiscal year 2009, Congress provided DOD with about $65.9 billion in supplemental appropriations for GWOT as of March 2009 and the President plans on requesting an additional $75.5 billion in supplemental appropriations for GWOT for the remainder of the fiscal year. A total of $31.0 billion has been obligated in the first quarter of fiscal year 2009 through December 2008. The United States' commitments to GWOT will likely involve the continued investment of significant resources, requiring decision makers to consider difficult trade-offs as the nation faces an increasing long-range fiscal challenge. The magnitude of future costs will depend on several direct and indirect cost variables and, in some cases, decisions that have not yet been made. DOD's future costs will likely be affected by the pace and duration of operations, the types of facilities needed to support troops overseas, redeployment plans, and the amount of equipment to be repaired or replaced. DOD compiles and reports monthly and cumulative incremental obligations incurred to support GWOT in a monthly report commonly called the Contingency Operations Status of Funds Report. DOD leadership uses this report, along with other information, to advise Congress on the costs of the war and to formulate future GWOT budget requests. DOD reports these obligations by appropriation, contingency operation, and military service or defense agency. DOD has prepared monthly reports on the obligations ...
Date: March 30, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Acquisitions: Department of Defense Needs a Unified Strategy for Balancing Investments in Tactical Wheeled Vehicles

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Ground-based military operations generally make use of two broad categories of vehicles: combat vehicles designed for a specific fighting function and tactical vehicles designed primarily for use by forces in the field in connection with or in support of tactical operations. Combat vehicles generally move on tracks versus wheels and include the Abrams tank, Bradley Fighting vehicle, and the Paladin self-propelled howitzer. Tactical vehicles generally move on wheels and include the High Mobility Multi-purpose Wheeled Vehicle (HMMWV), the Mine Resistant Ambush Protected (MRAP) vehicle, and families of trucks and trailers. For fiscal years 2009 and 2010, the Department of Defense (DOD) has requested an estimated $16 billion for the procurement of those tactical wheeled vehicles described in this report, including an estimated $6 billion for MRAP variants. In June 2007, Congress requested that we assess (1) the extent to which DOD had developed an overall tactical wheeled vehicle (TWV) investment strategy that considers timing, affordability, and sustainability; (2) the extent that the programs in the strategy fill identified gaps or provide duplicative capabilities; (3) the current status of selected tactical wheeled vehicle systems that are a part of this strategy; and (4) whether DOD is pursuing a knowledge-based acquisition1 approach as a part of this strategy. On the basis of discussions with your staff, we initially focused on gathering and analyzing data related to the MRAP program. We provided the members of your staffs with a series of briefings between September 2007 and March 2008, and summarized the results of our MRAP work in a July 2008 report. Shortly thereafter, and on the basis of additional discussions with your staffs, we resumed the work related to our overall assessment of tactical wheeled vehicles and provided an interim briefing ...
Date: September 28, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Military Personnel: Reserve Compensation Has Increased Significantly and Is Likely to Rise Further as DOD and VA Prepare for the Implementation of Enhanced Educational Benefits

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "In past reports, we have raised a number of concerns about the effectiveness of DOD's approach to compensation. For example, in our 2005 report on the challenges facing the United States in the 21st century, we emphasized the need for a baseline review of all major federal programs and policies, including military compensation, to ensure that they are efficiently and effectively meeting their objectives, particularly in light of concerns about the affordability and sustainability of federal spending. In 2005 and 2007, we assessed the active duty and reserve compensation systems and found the cost to provide compensation was substantial and rising. We also found that DOD's piecemeal approach to compensation involved increasing or making changes to compensation without completely understanding the impact that these changes might have on recruitment and retention. As DOD increasingly relies on the reserve components to carry out its military operations domestically and abroad, DOD and Congress have taken steps to improve recruitment and retention by increasing compensation. One example involves expanding educational benefits for mobilized reservists. The recently enacted Post 9-11 Veterans Educational Assistance Act (Post 9-11 VEAA), which becomes effective on August 1, 2009, provides active and reserve component servicemembers who qualify for the maximum benefit with a more generous benefit than existing benefits by providing (1) full tuition and fees up to the amount of tuition and fees regularly charged to in-state students at the most expensive public institution in a given reservist's state, (2) a monthly stipend for living expenses, and (3) an annual stipend for books and required educational expenses. In addition, the new Post 9-11 VEAA benefit allows eligible servicemembers to use educational benefits after discharge or release from active duty and authorizes the Secretary of Defense to ...
Date: July 6, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Business Transformation: Status of Department of Defense Efforts to Develop a Management Approach to Guide Business Transformation

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "This letter formally transmits GAO's findings on the status of the Department of Defense's efforts to develop a management approach to guide business transformation. This work was performed under the authority of the Comptroller General to conduct evaluations on his own initiative and as part of our work for GAO's High Risk Series, January 2009 Update."
Date: January 9, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Military Training: DOD's Report on the Sustainability of Training Ranges Addresses Most of the Congressional Reporting Requirements and Continues to Improve with Each Annual Update

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "A fundamental principle of military readiness is that the military must train as it intends to fight. Military training ranges provide the primary means to accomplish this goal. The Department of Defense's (DOD) training ranges vary in size from a few acres, for small arms training, to over a million acres for large maneuver exercises and weapons testing, and include broad open ocean areas for offshore training and testing. New advances in military technology, coupled with the complexity of recent military operations in Iraq, Afghanistan, and other locations around the world, generate the need to continually update and maintain DOD's training ranges. Senior DOD and military service officials have reported for some time that they face increasing difficulties in carrying out realistic training at military installations due to outside influences. DOD has defined a number of factors--including competition for broadcast frequencies or airspace, air pollution, noise pollution, endangered species, critical habitats and other protected resources, unexploded ordinance and munitions, urban growth around installations, and civilian access--that it says encroach upon its training ranges and capabilities. Because the military faces obstacles in acquiring new training lands, the preservation and sustainment of its current lands is a priority. Sustainable training range management focuses on practices that allow the military to manage its ranges in a way that ensures their usefulness well into the future. As required by section 366(a) of the Bob Stump National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2003 (as amended), DOD was to submit a comprehensive plan for using existing authorities available to the department to address training constraints caused by limitations on the use of worldwide military lands, marine areas, and airspace to Congress in fiscal year 2004 with annual progress reports beginning in fiscal year ...
Date: October 27, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Statutory Authorities to Prohibit Inspector General Activities

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "This letter provides information Congress requested at the March 25, 2009, hearing entitled The Roles and Responsibilities of Inspectors General within Financial Regulatory Agencies. During the hearing, the former Inspector General (IG) of the Department of Homeland Security (DHS) testified that provisions of the Inspector General Act of 1978, as amended (IG Act), allow the Secretary of the Department of the Treasury to prevent the IG from pursuing an investigation or audit, including the issuance of subpoenas, under certain conditions. Due to concerns about the possible inappropriate use of such authorities, Congress asked GAO to identify federal agencies that possess the authority under the IG Act to prohibit audits and investigations by their offices of inspectors general (IG offices) and to determine the extent to which such provisions have been used to limit the IGs' activities."
Date: May 8, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Critical Infrastructure: Actions Needed to Improve the Consistency, Reliability, and Usefulness of DOD's Tier 1 Task Critical Asset List

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The Department of Defense (DOD) relies on a global network of defense critical infrastructure so essential that the incapacitation, exploitation, or destruction of an asset within this network could severely affect DOD's ability to deploy, support, and sustain its forces and operations worldwide and to implement its core missions, including current missions in Iraq and Afghanistan. Because of its importance to DOD operations, this defense critical infrastructure could be vulnerable to attacks by adversaries, and vulnerable to natural disasters and hazards, such as hurricanes and earthquakes. Since September 2003, the Office of the Assistant Secretary of Defense for Homeland Defense and Americas' Security Affairs (ASD[HD&ASA]) has been responsible for developing and ensuring implementation of critical infrastructure protection policy and program guidance. To identify and help assure the availability of this mission-critical infrastructure, in August 2005 DOD established the Defense Critical Infrastructure Program (DCIP), assigning overall responsibility for the program to ASD(HD&ASA). In April 2008, DOD issued an instruction that further assigned responsibilities and prescribed procedures for the implementation of DCIP, among other things. In October 2008, DOD formalized the process for identifying and prioritizing its critical infrastructure. Since 2006, ASD(HD&ASA) has collaborated with the Joint Staff to compile a list of all DOD- and non-DOD-owned infrastructure essential to accomplish DOD's missions. To support this effort, the combatant commands and military services are to identify and place their critical assets into prioritized tiers, including Tier 1 Task Critical Assets, which are assets of such extraordinary importance that their incapacitation or destruction would have a serious, debilitating effect on the ability of one or more military services, combatant commands, or DCIP Defense Infrastructure Sector Lead Agents to execute the mission essential tasks they support. Defense Critical Assets, on the other ...
Date: July 17, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Acquisitions: Additional Analysis Needed to Capture Cost Differences Between Conventional and Nuclear Propulsion for Navy's Future Cruiser

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2008 requires that any budget request for construction of a new class of major combatant vessels will be for one with an integrated nuclear power system, unless the Secretary of Defense submits notification to Congress that it is not in the national interest to do so. The Navy's Next Generation Cruiser--CG(X)--is subject to this legislation. In response to a congressional request, GAO reviewed the Navy's analysis of options for CG(X), including cost estimates related to building nuclear and conventional cruisers. GAO examined (1) the design concepts included in the CG(X) Analysis of Alternatives, (2) how each ship design concept addresses threats that cause capability gaps for maritime air and missile defense, and (3) how the Navy's methodology and assumptions affect its estimates of the relative costs for conventional and nuclear cruisers. To accomplish this, GAO analyzed CG(X) program documents, interviewed Navy and Department of Defense officials, and assessed the effect of alternative methodologies and assumptions on cost estimates. This letter is an unclassified summary of the classified report."
Date: August 7, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Military Pay: The Defense Finance and Accounting Service--Indianapolis Could Improve Control Activities over Its Processing of Active Duty Army Military Personnel Federal Payroll Taxes

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "GAO first designated DOD financial management as high risk in 1995. GAO's biennial reports on high-risk areas are meant to bring focus to specific areas needing added attention. Areas are identified, in some cases, as high risk due to their greater vulnerabilities to fraud, waste, abuse, and mismanagement. Since 1995, weaknesses in DOD's financial management have adversely affected not only the reliability of reported financial data, but also the efficiency and effectiveness of its business operations. The department has annually acknowledged that pervasive, long-standing weaknesses in business systems, processes, and controls have prevented auditors from determining the reliability of reported financial statement information. Weaknesses in Army military pay systems, processes, and controls have contributed to this problem. The Department of the Army paid about $4.7 billion in federal payroll taxes for approximately 638,900 active duty military servicemembers for calendar year 2007, from the active duty Army military personnel appropriation. The Secretary of the Army relies on the Defense Finance and Accounting Service-Indianapolis (DFAS-IN) for processing and accounting support in paying the taxes for active duty servicemembers. This support includes calculating and reporting federal payroll taxes for active duty Army servicemembers to the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) and paying those taxes to the Department of the Treasury. Federal payroll taxes are amounts withheld from employees' wages for federal income taxes, Social Security, and Medicare (Hospital Insurance) taxes, as well as the employer's mandatory matching contributions for Social Security and Medicare taxes. GAO's five standards of internal control provide the overall framework for establishing and maintaining internal control in the federal government. These standards help management identify and address major performance and management challenges and areas at greatest risk of fraud, waste, abuse, and mismanagement. Further, the Office of Management ...
Date: June 18, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Infrastructure: The Army Needs to Establish Priorities, Goals, and Performance Measures for Its Arsenal Support Program Initiative

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "The Army has three government-owned and operated manufacturing arsenals that it considers vital to the Department of Defense's (DOD) industrial base because they provide products or services that are either unavailable from private industry or ensure a ready and controlled source of technical competence and resources in case of national defense contingencies or other emergencies. These three arsenals are Pine Bluff Arsenal, Arkansas; Rock Island Arsenal, Illinois; and Watervliet Arsenal, New York. Pine Bluff's core mission is the production of conventional ammunition and other types of munitions. Rock Island's core mission is weapons manufacturing, and the arsenal is home to the Army's only remaining foundry. Watervliet is the Army's only cannon maker and also produces other armaments and mortars. Historically, the Army's arsenals have generally had vacant or underutilized space. For many years the Army has not provided the capital investment needed to keep pace with modern manufacturing requirements and retain core skills in the arsenal workforce. Additionally, the arsenals have generally had lower workloads during peacetime, but since the onset of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan they have experienced a surge in workloads to provide vital manufacturing capabilities, such as producing armor kits to harden Army personnel vehicles after it was found that the Army's existing vehicles were susceptible to improvised explosive devices. During the defense drawdown of the 1990s, the manufacturing arsenals were struggling from a diminishing and fluctuating workload, high product costs, significant reductions in force, and a fear that their core skills were being lost. The National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2001 authorized the Arsenal Support Program Initiative (ASPI), as a demonstration program designed to help maintain the viability of the Army's manufacturing arsenals. The ASPI authority sets forth 11 purposes ...
Date: November 5, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Management: Observations on DOD's Fiscal Year 2010 Budget Request for Corrosion Prevention and Control

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "This report formally transmits the briefing in response to section 2228(e) of title 10 of the United States Code. The statute requires the Comptroller General to provide an analysis of the Department of Defense's budget submission for corrosion prevention and control, as well as an analysis of the corrosion report accompanying defense budget materials, and provide the results to the congressional defense committees within 60 days after submission of the Department of Defense budget. On May 26, 2009, we provided the briefing to staff Congressional committees to satisfy the mandate and 60-day reporting requirement."
Date: June 1, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Force Structure: Actions Needed to Improve DOD's Ability to Manage, Assess, and Report on Global Defense Posture Initiatives

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "In its ongoing global realignment of U.S. forces and installations, the Department of Defense (DOD) plans to reduce the number of troops permanently stationed overseas, consolidate overseas bases, and establish a network of smaller forward locations with limited personnel. Realigning the U.S. overseas posture involves closing obsolete and redundant bases, constructing new facilities costing billions of dollars, and ensuring that other needed infrastructure is in place to support realigned forces and missions. These significant changes to force structure both in the United States and overseas are being implemented to enhance operational efficiencies and ensure access during future contingency operations. DOD requests for overseas military construction projects extend around the world including Europe, the Pacific, Southwest Asia, and Central America. For fiscal year 2010, DOD requested approximately $1.5 billion, or 7 percent, of the regular military construction request for overseas military construction. The Congress has supported the DOD's efforts to reassess and realign its overseas posture to better respond to emerging security challenges, but the Senate Appropriations Committee has expressed concerns about the department's ability to effectively manage and accomplish such an ambitious program as well as the fidelity of the global basing plan given the rapidly changing global security environment."
Date: July 2, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Defense Management: Observations on DOD's Analysis of Options for Improving Corrosion Prevention and Control through Earlier Planning in the Requirements and Acquisition Processes

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "This report formally transmits briefing in response to section 1041 of the Duncan Hunter National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2009. The act requires the Comptroller General to review the Department of Defense's report on options for improving corrosion prevention and control, including the methodology used to assess the potential options, and provide the results to the House and Senate Armed Services Committees within 60 days after submission of the Department of Defense report. On April 29, 2009, we provided the briefing to staff of Congressional committees to satisfy the mandate and 60-day reporting requirement."
Date: May 29, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department

Overseas Contingency Operations: Reported Obligations for the Department of Defense

Description: Correspondence issued by the Government Accountability Office with an abstract that begins "Since 2001, Congress has provided the Department of Defense (DOD) with $893 billion in supplemental and annual appropriations, as of June 2009, primarily for Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO).1 DOD's reported annual obligations2 for OCO have shown a steady increase from about $0.2 billion in fiscal year 2001 to about $162.4 billion in fiscal year 2008. For fiscal year 2009, Congress appropriated $151 billion in war-related requests. A total of $89.1 billion has been obligated through the third quarter of fiscal year 2009 through June 2009. The United States' commitments to OCO will likely involve the continued investment of significant resources, requiring decision makers to consider difficult trade-offs as the nation faces an increasing long-range fiscal challenge. The magnitude of future costs will depend on several direct and indirect cost variables and, in some cases, decisions that have not yet been made. DOD's future costs will likely be affected by the pace and duration of operations, the types of facilities needed to support troops overseas, redeployment plans, and the amount of equipment to be repaired or replaced. DOD compiles and reports monthly and cumulative incremental obligations incurred to support OCO in a monthly report commonly called the Contingency Operations Status of Funds Report. DOD leadership uses this report, along with other information, to advise Congress on the costs of the war and to formulate future OCO budget requests. DOD reports these obligations by appropriation, contingency operation, and military service or defense agency. DOD has prepared monthly reports on the obligations incurred for its involvement in OCO since fiscal year 2001."
Date: September 25, 2009
Creator: United States. Government Accountability Office.
Partner: UNT Libraries Government Documents Department