May 12 2010
Opening Statement of Chairman James R. Langevin
Strategic Forces Subcommittee
Mark-up of H.R. 5136, the FY11 NDAA
|May 12, 2010|
“The Strategic Forces Subcommittee meets today in open session to markup H.R. 5136, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2011. I’d like to begin by saying it has been a pleasure shaping this mark with my friend the Ranking Member, Mr. Turner.
“While we don’t agree on everything, we have forged significant common ground in this mark, and I deeply appreciate your partnership in this endeavor.
“I would also like to thank the other members of the subcommittee and their staffs for their contributions and participation in the process; this is a true team product.
“The product itself would not have been possible without the work of the subcommittee staff: Bob DeGrasse, Kari Bingen, Eryn Robinson, Leonor Tomero and Alejandra Villarreal. I would also like to thank my personal staff as well. Thank you all for the hard work and long hours involved in putting this mark together.
“The Strategic Forces Subcommittee has jurisdiction over some of the most controversial issues that come before the committee, including nuclear weapons, missile defenses, space and intelligence. The mark before the subcommittee this morning includes:
• $15 billion for the Department of Energy’s Atomic Energy Defense Activities, not including defense nuclear nonproliferation programs;
• $10.3 billion for ballistic missile defense programs, $361.6 million above the President’s request; and
• Approximately $9.7 billion for unclassified national security space programs.
“These three important initiatives will enhance our national security:
“First, reflecting the President’s request to provide a strong and unprecedented investment in our nuclear deterrent, the mark includes a significant increase for the activities of the National Nuclear Security Administration to sustain a safe, secure, and reliable arsenal without nuclear testing.
“Second, the mark includes a significant increase above the President’s request for ballistic missile defense systems that counter the most pressing and likely threats to the United States, our deployed troops, and our allies and friends.
“Third, the mark provides for important military space programs that are in critical phases of development or sustainment, including the Operationally Responsive Space program and Military Satellite Communications.
“For the Department of Energy’s national security programs, excluding non-proliferation activities which are considered in the full committee mark, our mark includes $7 billion for nuclear weapons activities, a 10 percent increase over last year’s funding, and $5.6 billion for environmental and other defense activities.
“The mark supports the requirements of a strong national security to address the gravest threats we face, including measures to reduce the danger that nuclear weapons might spread to terrorists or to countries hostile to the United States. It provides a robust foundation as a context for implementing the recently-released Nuclear Posture Review, moving forward with the New Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty signed with Russia, and supporting nuclear non-proliferation priorities.
“In that regard, this mark reflects the recommendations made last year by the Congressional Commission on the Strategic Posture of the United States chaired by Dr. William Perry and Dr. James Schlesinger, which this subcommittee helped create three years ago.
“The mark also takes note of the conclusions of the September 2009 JASON report on life extension programs. The JASONs found that the ‘lifetimes of today's nuclear warheads could be extended for decades, with no anticipated loss in confidence, by using approaches similar to those employed in LEPs to date.’ However, they expressed concern that the ‘continued success of stockpile stewardship is threatened by lack of program stability,’ and that ‘the surveillance program is becoming inadequate.’
“Based on these recommendations, this mark supports significant investment in the scientific, technical, and physical infrastructure that supports the stockpile, and investment in the human capital on which the success of the Stockpile Stewardship and Management Programs depend.
“In addition, the mark provides several funding increases:
• It adds $11 million to Directed Stockpile Work at the Pantex plant in Texas to ensure that the Life Extension Programs, stockpile surveillance and critical weapons dismantlements stay on schedule;
• And it adds $85 million for Readiness in Technical Base and Facilities to avoid unnecessary disruption at Pantex and at the Y-12 facility in Tennessee.
“The mark offsets these increases by taking advantage of prior-year uncosted balances and denying the $50.2 million funding request for Tritium Readiness due to technical problems with the program.
“Also based on recommendations from the Perry-Schlesinger commission and the JASON report, the mark directs the NNSA Administrator to strengthen the stockpile surveillance program.
“The mark fully supports the funding request for Environmental and other Defense Activities, including the important work of Defense Environmental Cleanup.
“The committee is supportive of the progress made using the additional funding provided under the economic stimulus package. This effort is on track and will significantly reduce the cleanup footprint, accelerate the disposition of nuclear waste and cleanup, and create or retain thousands of jobs at cleanup sites nationwide.
“Turning to missile defense programs, the mark authorizes $361.6 million over the budget request of $9.9 billion to strengthen our defenses against the most immediate threats from nations such as Iran and North Korea.
“About a third of this increase, $133.6 million, is provided in response to an unfunded request by the Army Chief of Staff. This increase will speed up the repair and recertification of PAC-3 Patriot missiles, and upgrade 24 additional launchers to the improved PAC-3 configuration.
“The mark also provides increases for two key elements of the Administration’s new Phased Adaptive Approach:
• It provides $65 million more for advance procurement of AN/TPY-2 radars to avoid obsolescence of key components and to maintain the industrial base; and
• It provides $50 million more for fielding of the Aegis Standard Missile-3 to stabilize SM-3 production.
“These are good government moves that should reduce total procurement costs in the long run.
“The mark includes a $50 million increase for directed energy research and the Airborne Laser Test Bed to facilitate the testing and development of technologies that are most likely to yield operational capabilities in the future.
“Finally, the mark provides an increase of $88 million for the U.S. – Israeli cooperative missile defense program. This increase brings the total authorization for FY 2011 to just above the current spending level for this important cooperative development program.
“Last year, the subcommittee required the Department to establish an agreed schedule and knowledge points for the Arrow-3 cooperative program, and I’m pleased to report that good progress has been made on those benchmarks.
“The mark also includes two legislative provisions relating to missile defense.
“First, the mark contains limits on deployment of missile defenses in Europe consistent with the provisions included in previous defense authorizations: the provision would limit the availability of funds for deployment of medium- or long-range missile defense until any host country has signed and ratified the necessary agreements authorizing deployment; and until 45 days after the committee receives the independent assessment required by the defense bill last year. It would also limit deployment until the Secretary of Defense certifies that the proposed system is operationally effective based on realistic flight testing.
“Second, at the request of the Administration, the mark would repeal the ban on contracting directly with a foreign government for missile defense activities, to allow for more direct collaboration with our friends and allies on missile defense.
“The mark also requires the Department to prepare reports on: the adequacy of the Patriot force structure; options to restructure the Medium Extended Air Defense (MEADS) program; actions to mitigate the threat posed to missile defense command, control, and communications by cyber and SATCOM jamming threats; and regional missile defense architectures and the comprehensive force management process.
“On military space programs, the mark builds on the bipartisan approach of previous years. This should be an important year for the national security space community, with a number of new systems set to launch including the Space-Based Surveillance System, the ORS-1 satellite, the Advanced EHF communications satellite and the Space Based Infra-Red early warning system.
“Overall, the mark recommends a $182.2 million decrease from the budget request of $9.9 billion for unclassified National Security Space Programs.
“The subcommittee continues to view sustaining the technology base for protected communications as a key priority following the cancellation of the TSAT program. The mark includes $50 million to enable the Air Force to continue developing communication technologies that could be used on future blocks of current communication satellites or, eventually, on next-generation communication satellites.
“Reflecting the subcommittee’s continuing support of the Operationally Responsive Space – or ORS – program, the mark includes an increase of $40 million to acquire enabling technologies and to accelerate development of critical infrastructure for rapid replenishment.
“The mark also contains another unfunded request from the Army, an increase of $51.2 million for procurement of additional Defense Advanced GPS Receivers (DAGRs) to reduce the cost of each unit and increase the number of units available for deployment to soldiers.
“The mark provides an increase of $28 million for the Evolved Expendable Launch Vehicle (EELV) program to achieve a common upper stage between the Atlas and Delta launch vehicles, enabling efficient use of the existing RL-10 rocket engine inventory.
“The mark includes $5 million to support mitigation measures by the Navy to augment the declining UHF narrow-band communications capacity used by forces on the move, in theatre and around the world. These measures are particularly important as the existing UHF capacity remains insufficient for the growing demand, forcing our troops to use less reliable line-of-sight radios.
“The mark includes a $300 million cut, leaving $52 million for the National Polar-orbiting Operational Environmental Satellite System (NPOESS) program. This cut stems from the lack of a clear strategy for restructuring the weather program. Consistent with the committee’s position in the past three years, the mark denies the budget request of $40.9 million for the High-Integrity Global Positioning System (HIGPS) program.
“The mark also cuts $30 million from the budget request of $185.9 million for the Space Based Surveillance System (SBSS) based on recommendations by the Government Accountability Office.
“Further, the mark includes a legislative provision that authorizes the National Air and Space Intelligence Center to conduct original intelligence analysis and production, and requires Congressional notification of changes in the lead integrator for foreign space and counterspace intelligence analysis.
“Finally, this mark requires reports on: options for hosting defense payloads on commercial satellites; a plan to ensure the development and production of eight megabyte or greater non-volatile, radiation hardened memory chips; a plan for retaining the ability to produce moderate accuracy, survivable star trackers; and the Department’s review of directed energy technologies.
“In conclusion, I believe this mark advances prudent measures that enable the critical national security priorities within the jurisdiction of this subcommittee. It addresses important decisions in a bipartisan fashion and I strongly recommend that the mark be adopted.
“I would like to recognize my friend and colleague, Mr. Turner, the Ranking Member of the subcommittee.”