March 1, 2012 -- Gen. Raymond T. Odierno remarks to HASC on Military Construction
March 6, 2012
Thank you Mr. Chairman. Thank you Mr. Chairman and Ranking Member Bishop -- and the rest of the members of the committee. It's an honor to be here in front of you today. The Army today continues to be a truly globally engaged Army with currently 95,000 Soldiers deployed and another 96,000 Soldiers forward stationed around the world as we sit here today. By the end of FY17, as you know, we will have decreased our end strength in the Active Component from 570,000 to 490,000. We will decrease the National Guard from 358,000 to 353,000 and our -- and our Army Reserve from 206,000 to 205,000.
It is imperative for us that we sustain a gradual ramp as we go through this in order to take care of our Soldiers, to continue to provide Forces necessary to finish the mission in Afghanistan and facilitate reversibility based upon the great uncertainty that we face around the world today. End strength above 490,000 is strictly funded through OCO and must be sustained to help mitigate the risks as I just outlined as we continue our operations in Afghanistan.
In FY13, military construction is a 32% reduction from the FY12 budget request and includes 103 projects worth about $3.6 billion. Comparatively we have reduced the overseas military construction by 56% from the FY12 budget request. These reductions, both domestically and overseas have caused financially prudent project deferrals. But despite these reductions, we continue to fully put a heavy emphasis on funding critical infrastructure, sustainment, restoration and modernization of our failing facilities. And we have budgeted 90% of the requirement over this budget.
We are currently conducting our Total Army Analysis, which enables us to get into the specifics of how we will reorganize our Army and balance it between combat, combat support, combat service support, as well as balancing structure between the Active Component and the Reserve Component. As we did the budget, we did not assume a future BRAC with a budget submission. However, we fully support the need for a future BRAC. Regarding BRAC 2005, 101 out of the 102 obligations were certified and we will continue to monitor all residuals to ensure we attain 100 percent closure.
The BRAC gave us a one time savings of $4.8 billion and a net annual savings of $1 billion. Our domestic military construction funding request includes those with the most critical need. The request contains 47 projects in 16 states. Our largest project is $192 million construction of a new cadet barracks at West Point. The last construction of barracks at West Point was in 1965. The clear need for this is based on the fact that we now have 18% of the Corps cadets who are now female, and we had not figured that as we built our barracks. And we need to expand our barracks in order to have the appropriate capability to support the females that are now part of the Corps of cadets.
Additionally, the budget includes funding for Arlington National Cemetery expansion. This includes $84 million for the Millennium Project, capital improvements and expansion and $19 million for the planning and design for additional expansion of Arlington National Cemetery. There will be a gradual increase in the overall percentage of military construction funds for the National Guard and Army Reserves. Our current request will fund 37 projects in 26 states. In Europe, we'll reduce the amount of forces and implement rotational forces for training combined readiness exercises with our Allies.
I believe this will serve as a future model, using a tailorable approach with regionally aligned forces and prepositioned stocks in order to meet our requirements with our Allies and partners around the world. Since 2006 in Europe, we have closed approximately 100 sites with real property value of more than $9 billion. From now through 2015, the Army identified another 23 sites for disposal and turnover. Further reductions and consolidations will come with the inactivation of the two brigade combat teams and other enablers from Europe in Fiscal Years '13 and '14.
There are significant savings and cost avoidance associated with divesting these facilities. Consolidation efforts alone at Weisbaden alone will yield $112 million in annual savings. Though OSD is the final approval authority, Secretary McHugh and I strongly support the funding for replacement of the Landstuhl Hospital. This is because it supports critical casualty care for injured personnel throughout three combatant commands in the Middle East, Africa and Europe. And has served so for many, many years and it's important that we sustain this incredibly important facility.
In the Asia Pacific, the Korean government will be funding $10.8 billion for the Yongsan relocation plan and land partnership plan for our consolidation efforts. In comparison, this budget only contains only one Battalion Headquarters project for Korea at the cost of $45 million. To further save, we must reduce the costs of running our installations. Since 2003, we've reduced our installation energy consumption by 14% despite increasing population by over 20%. We will continue to evaluate all energy investment opportunities to include all net zero initiatives and renewable power in a vetted cost/benefit analysis to determine long term benefits and cost savings.
For example, we have and continue to expand metering programs on all of our installations. I'd like to leave you with one last thought. Sequestration is not in the best interest of our national security. The impact to the Army could be an additional 100,000 in cuts to our end strength on top of the already 80,000 that we're taking now. This would result in severe reductions in the National Guard, the Army Reserves as well as additional reductions in the active component and will significantly decrease what the Army can do for the Joint Force.
Mr. Chairman, members of the committee, thank you so much for allowing us to testify today and I look forward to your questions. Thank you.