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Search Tags: Army
The military has doubled-down on efforts to prevent sexual assault. They've labeled this month "Sexual Assault Awareness Month." It's a topic Sgt. Maj. of the Army Ray Chandler brings up whenever he visits soldiers. He says "Take back your Army" from those who commit sexual assault. Chandler told Federal Drive hosts Tom Temin and Emily Kopp some of the most recent statistics about sexual assault in the Army.
The Fort Huachuca, Ariz., solar project will provide the Army with renewable energy at no additional cost to the government. The solar panels are expected to provide 18 megawatts of electricity, enough to light a small-sized city.
The Army breaks ground Friday on a giant solar array at sunny Fort Huachuca in Arizona. Once built, it will provide about a quarter of the energy needed to power the mid-sized base. It will be the largest solar project in the military's portfolio for a while. Amanda Simpson, executive director for the U.S. Army's Energy Initiatives Task Force, described the scope of the project to Federal Drive hosts Tom Temin and Emily Kopp.
The Army says it must shrink to 490,000 by October 2015, and then to 450,000 two years later. If automatic budget cuts resume, the Army will have to reduce to 420,000. The Associated Press reports while a lot of the reduction may come from voluntary retirements, resignations and decreased enlistments, Army commanders will have to force as many as 3,000 officers to leave by the end of October 2015. Of those, nearly 1,500 are captains, 550 are majors.
An independent commission to make recommendations about the restructuring of the Army isn't meeting with much welcome from Army leaders. But it does have some support. Retired Army Maj. Gen. Gus Hargett, president of the National Guard Association, is one of the most outspoken advocates for the outside commission. He told In Depth with Francis Rose the Army needs an outside look before it downsizes.
A group of functional domain experts are reaching out to the military services and agencies to look at service contracting spending across 12 areas. The Defense Department's goal is to use strategic sourcing to improve how it buys in these categories. The Army created a governance board to bring together all stakeholders during specific points of the acquisition process to find opportunities to collaborate.
The Defense Department's overall budget will shrink by a combined $900 billion by fiscal year 2021, according to Army Chief of Staff Gen. Ray Odierno. He tells the Senate Armed Services Committee how the Army will absorb more than $260 billion in cuts during that span. On Pentagon Solutions, Odierno says the Pentagon is creating a Total Army Solution for the looming budget cuts.
The rapid acquisition policy the Army uses in Afghanistan could be moving too quickly. The department can customize how it uses the Defense Acquisition System to make sure war fighters get what they need. But the Army's information technology systems might need a slower approach. Christopher Pernin, director of the Force Development and Technology Program at the RAND Arroyo Center and a senior physical scientist and professor at the Pardee RAND Graduate School, tells In Depth with Francis Rose they believe the Army can use acquisition policies it already has to improve its IT systems.
A tight budget is forcing the Army to cut its ranks by at least 70,000 people over the next five years. The Army also has to let go of some weapons programs to keep its spending levels down. Those plans could come at the cost of military readiness.