Military Spending

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It is proper for a unit to budget more than they expect to spend.  Every program adds extra into their budget because they know to run out of money causes very expensive delays.  Typically that extra is about 30%.  Just like your present Congressman, I am comfortable approving a budget that has enough funds in it to cover unforeseen circumstances.   Unlike you current Congressman, my expectation is to see 20% come back to the taxpayer.  If we do not get at least 10% back I  expect to see generals and military secretaries fired.  

These are a few typical end of year spending decisions
TV in hallways TV in hallway   I was recently talking with a co-worker and he told of a time when his unit had funds that were about to expire and if they weren't spent in the next few weeks those funds would be returned to the taxpayer.  The unit hired 6 people for 1 month and then let them go.  
I was sent these pictures from WPAFB.      
whiteboard on aisleway

Whiteboard in aisle added a year after the rest of the office renovations.  Reportedly because there was extra money.  
  With about six weeks left before the end of the fiscal year, the C-17 and C-141 training lines were projected to have more than $2 million dollars left at the end of the year.  At that time the cost for flying a C-141 for one hour was about $2500.  The decision was made to try and fly off those extra hours.  Though later reversed, because of the heavy schedule a C-17 crew fly low level over the Grand Canyon two days in a row without properly coordinating with Canyon Air Traffic Control. 

The majority of my life has been spent in and supporting the military.  Some of the generals in charge are some of the smartest people you will ever meet.  And then we train them to be horrible decision makers with our money.  We can improve our military’s efficiency by 20% just by telling our generals they need to return money to the taxpayer.  The current budget contains enough money to produce world class equipment and to take care of returning veterans.  

Over the past decade Wright-Pat has grown while missions from other parts of the country were shifted here to the Miami Valley.  To make and keep Wright-Patterson AFB strong requires the base’s five major elements achieve their potential as great assets to the region and the nation.  We must efficiently manage the resources given to us by the people of this nation and produce tangible results for the war fighter and for the general public.
The two base organizations that promise the most benefit to the nation are the Life Cycle Management Center (LCMC) and the Air Force Research Lab (AFRL).  Both are full of people ready to do the work necessary to support the war fighting community.  Both need significant improvement in performance.
The AFRL could have scientist developing a theory on how to go faster than the speed of sound without causing a sonic boom while somewhere else in the lab an engineer could be assembling a small unmanned vehicle to see if solar panels make sense for long endurance flights.  Right now the talent that resides in AFRL is underutilized because we do not see top tier scientist in their fields coming to work at AFRL.  One of the reasons for this is because we have not been successful in bringing the hardware needed to draw top talent to the area.  The promise of a modern centrifuge does not have the same draw as operating a modern centrifuge. 
Unless LCMC starts to produce significantly better results, Wright-Patterson is in danger of losing much of the gains seen this past decade.  LCMC failure started when they forgot it is their job to be the “adult in the room”.  LCMC must insist the acquisition process be followed and also keep the process documented for the next generation of acquisition specialist.  It makes sense for the units fighting the wars to want new equipment now.  LCMC has fallen into the trap of making things take twice as long because of the temptation to try shortcuts in order to get to the 80% solution. 


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Tom McMasters is an independent candidate that will work for you in Congress. Share what you know with your neighbors and friends during discussions, personal conversations, on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Snapchat. 



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