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Installations to get higher priority of funding

By Eric Cramer

WASHINGTON (Army News Service, March 23, 2005) -- The Army has implemented a new policy that will increase annual funding for installations, Secretary of the Army Francis Harvey said today.

Army leaders have set a goal of funding installations at an annual rate of 90 percent of validated requirements for base operations services and for sustainment, restoration and modernization, he said.

"Well-being of Soldiers is a number-one priority for me," Harvey said. "We decided to fund 90 percent of both what is called the 'BOS' and SRM.. This is a significant change from past policy."

Harvey said the Army will also continue an aggressive barracks modernization program to bring all Army barracks up to the current standard.

"I want that cleared up this year," he said. "We can't ask our Soldiers to go into harm's way and then ask them to live in substandard housing."

The Army will continue to program the goal of 95 percent for SRM set by the Office of the Secretary of Defense.

The new BOS and SRM policy will increase funding for installations. The Army Budget Office will distribute the funding in phases through the Assistant Chief of Staff for Installation Management and the Installation Management Agency.

Harvey said the funds will come from other parts of the Army's budget as the Army identifies programs lagging in execution during its annual budget review.

"We have reprogramming flexibility," he said. "I just reprioritized the funding." He said the funding will be provided in a number of phases.

IMA will program the funds to provide infrastructure upgrades and services that have been most lacking during recent months.

Funding installations to 90 percent of requirements provides a more predictable level of funding that gives garrison commanders more control in managing their communities, he said.

Army Chief of Staff Gen. Peter J. Schoomaker has also supported the funding change.

"Our installations serve as our flagships of readiness," Schoomaker said. "The environment in which our Soldiers train, our civilians work, and our families live plays a key role in attracting, recruiting, and retaining the high quality people the Army needs. To enhance combat effectiveness and enrich the workplace setting, we are reinforcing our commitment to our Army family."

IMA planners are working to execute the new funding for maximum impact on the installations, they said. OCPA Public Affairs Home OCPA Public Affairs Home


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