Defense Department works toward $750B FY20 topline budget

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Former Deputy Secretary of Defense Bob Work outlines what decision-makers at the Pentagon could ask for in the FY20 budget, and why the latest proposed number is “a Christmas present.”


While President Trump has been eyeing a reduction of the defense budget, the Defense Department is still planning for the trend to continue. The $750 billion topline is the third new number the Department of Defense budgeters have worked with since the start of FY20 planning. Bob Work, former Deputy Secretary of Defense, says that this new goal opens up possibilities at the individual services.

“This is a Christmas present, being told you don’t have to worry about creating an alternate budget at 700, you can create an alternate budget at 750 billion,” Work said. “All of the services have an unfunded priority list… It’s required by Congress. What that is; ‘Wow, if we had just a little bit more money, this is what we would buy.’ All the services have this, so I assume what is happening right now… is the services are going through their unfunded priority list and saying, ‘We can buy this number of airplanes, x number of ships, we can possibly add an infantry brigade combat team.’”