The Defense Department is not ready for a new round of base closures as far as the Senate Armed Services Committee is concerned. DOD’s effort to transform the military, foster jointness and shed excess capacity during the 2005 round resulted in about 20 communities experiencing significant mission growth. In response, those communities made substantial investments in infrastructure and services to accommodate the expected influx of new personnel. “The committee believes that the Department of Defense must keep the promises that it made during the 2005 Base Realignment and Closure in regards to its current property, facilities and training spaces, as our military and associated communities are growing and modernizing based on these 2005 metrics,” according to the committee report accompanying the Senate version of the fiscal 2019 defense authorization bill.
The report indicates DOD needs to do a better job aligning its goals from BRAC 2005 with its infrastructure; one way to do that is by ensuring it adequately maintains its existing facilities. “The department must also continue improving existing infrastructure and pursuing military construction projects that effectively meet the demands of our future force, as opposed to asking this committee for a future complete overhaul of its posture at home,” it states.
The panel concludes by noting that a provision in the bill, S. 2987, prohibits the department from conducting a new BRAC round.