The Department of Defense yesterday submitted to the Congress reprogramming actions proposing to transfer a total of $9.7 billion to the Army and defense-wide accounts by borrowing the funds from other service accounts. This emergency action was necessary to extend Army and defense-wide operations in the absence of requested supplemental appropriations funds.
The two reprogramming requests would use transfer authority the Congress has provided the department and, if approved, would allow operations to continue until late July. The first reprogramming action would transfer $5.7 billion from the military personnel accounts of the other services to the Army’s military personnel account; the second would transfer $4 billion from the Operation and Maintenance (O&M) accounts of the other services and the DoD Working Capital Fund to the Army and Special Operations Command (SOCOM) O&M accounts.
The department previously outlined the steps that would be necessary to take to sustain operations, including maximizing the use of all available transfer authority as represented in these reprogramming actions. Without the ability to transfer these funds, the Army will run out of military personnel funds necessary to pay its soldiers by June 15. Accordingly, the department is requesting that the appropriate Congressional committees act on the reprogramming action by no later than June 9.
Congressional approval of this $9.7 billion reprogramming will only allow another few weeks of operations until the department as a whole runs out of critical funding. Should Congress fail to pass the GWOT supplemental appropriations legislation by mid-July, the department will have exhausted all military personnel and operations funding and will, at minimum, be unable to make payroll for both military and civilian personnel throughout the department. Service members and selected essential civilian employees, including those engaged in Iraq and Afghanistan, would continue to serve, but without pay. Non-essential civilian employees would be furloughed pursuant to applicable personnel procedures.