Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Highlights from Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee Action

The Senate Defense Appropriations Subcommittee approved its Fiscal Year 2008 bill yesterday.

Few details were immediately available, but some notable arms control and non-proliferation highlights include:

* Funding missile defense programs $310 million below the President’s request
* Cutting funding for the third missile defense site in Europe by $85 million
* Cutting funding for the Kinetic Energy Interceptor by $30 million
* Zeroing out all funds for the Space Test Bed

* Funding the destruction of U.S. chemical weapons stockpiles as required under the Chemical Weapons Convention $62 million above the amended President’s budget request

One lowlight, however, was that the Subcommittee markup fully funds the Airborne Laser missile defense program.

No figures were provided on the Navy Reliable Replacement Warhead program.

It also appears that the debacle involving a B-52 mistakenly flying six nuclear-armed cruise missiles across the U.S. created enough of a stir to prompt a reaction. According to a write-up by Congressional Quarterly:

During the session, language offered by Sen. Byron L. Dorgan, D-N.D., regarding procedures for handling nuclear weapons was added to the measure as part of Inouye's manager's amendment. The language is likely a response to a recent incident in which a B-52 bomber was mistakenly allowed to fly over the Midwest loaded with nuclear bombs last month.

The full Senate Appropriations Committee will consider the Defense Appropriations bill today.

Click here for arms control and non-proliferation highlights from the House Appropriations Committee action on the FY08 Defense Appropriations bill.

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