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the Budget Committee membership represents a superficial change that fails to come to grips with the fundamental problems that have been identified in congressional oversight. o Option 1D-clarify and enforce jurisdictions between commit
tees Clarifying the jurisdictional confusion among committees will provide much clearer guidance from the Congress and should measurably contribute to better strategic guidance within DoD. The current process lends itself to confusion and inconsistent oversight as committees compete for jurisdiction, reverse the recommendations of other committees, and dilute a clear perspective of national intent and policy.
There are no disadvantages to this option. Achieving it, however, may prove difficult. The problem is not one of unclear definitions or boundaries but of inconsistent efforts to police transgressions. Congress as an institution operates on consensus and compromise. Guarding jurisdiction “turf" is difficult, because it requires continuing attention and confrontation which may tax the pattern of trust and accommodation that must prevail in a legislative body like the Senate. 2. OPTIONS FOR DEALING WITH THE PROBLEM THAT CONGRESSIONAL
PROCEDURES REINFORCE DIVISIONS IN DOD o Option 2A-complete evolution to mission-oriented subcommit
tees Under this option, the Armed Services Committees would restructure their subcommittees to follow the primary missions of the Department of Defense, rather than to continue to review programs along appropriation account lines.
There are several advantages to this option. It would help shift the perspective away from artificial accounting inputs toward defense outputs. So long as the Congress reviews the DoD budget along appropriation account lines, it will fail to develop an integrated plan. Mission integration has been a primary shortcoming in DoD. If the Congress places a priority on mission integration, OSD and the Services will respond by giving it greater attention as well.
There are disadvantages to such an option, however. The Appropriations Committees prefer the present input-oriented categories because it is easier to control them, and changes in them, over time. The Appropriations Committees, especially in the House, presume a fiduciary responsibility to the public over appropriations, and as such operate with an accounting" mentality. This frame of reference places a premium on stable definitions and accounts. It is much preferable with this perspective for the Congress to determine those definitions on the input side than it is to permit DoD to determine the categories on the output side.
It could also be argued that having different structures-a mission-oriented approach in one committee and an input appropriation-oriented approach in the other-improves the quality of oversight in the Congress. Retaining the two different approaches would combine the strengths of both. Uncertainty and confusion at the staff level is the price paid for different subcommittee orientations by different committees. But that uncertainty and confusion is manageable, as has been demonstrated during the last four years.
• Option 2B-structure hearings along mission lines
Under this option, hearings on the defense budget would be structured along mission lines rather than along appropriation account lines for each of the Services.
This option is logically related to Option 2A which would organize the subcommittees along mission lines. As such, it would continue the effort to shift the focus away from inputs toward outputs. This approach would be especially valuable in the area of readiness and sustainability. These areas are traditionally neglected because the advocates for those areas-primarily the operational commanders-in-chief-do not traditionally testify on the details of the budget submissions. The primary testimony is given by the senior Service managers who are primarily oriented toward modernization rather than toward readiness.
There is a limit, however, to the value of the testimony of operational commanders in the area of procurement of new weapon systems, for example. The operational CINC's should lead on issues of current operations and the capabilities and problems of standing forces. They cannot be expected to be responsible for future systems. Here the emphasis could be placed on expanded joint hearings along mission lines. Instead of a hearing on tactical aircraft modernization in the Air Force and ground forces modernization in the Army, hearings could emphasize joint mission activities, such as “Combined Arms Operations and Close Air Support”. These hearings would be more useful in helping the committees determine problems and progress in meeting mission requirements and would aid in determining priorities among contending activities. o Option 2C-modify budget justification material to reflect mis
sions This option too is related to the two previous options in this section in that it is required to complement the shift away from artificial accounting inputs to mission outputs.
There would be substantial advantages to an improved ability to relate resource decisions to mission outputs. For example, if the Congress wished to add $10 billion over three years to improve U.S. capabilities for reinforcing NATO, Congress can do so only indirectly by increasing funding in certain categories, while providing instructions to DoD to apply those increases according to certain criteria. There is no way to know where the most effective investments could be made. And there is no way to insure that the funds will actually go to the intended purpose. Congress could add funds to increase the stockage level of war stocks in Europe, for example, but the Army could just as easily subsequently redirect those additional items of equipment to U.S.-based units.
A revised system linking resource decisions to program implementation would help overcome this shortcoming. Underlying this change would be an improvement in the PPB system that would focus on program execution. These changes could be beneficial to all of Dod, but they would help move Congress away from micromanagement of individual items toward broad issues of policy direction.
There are significant problems associated with presenting justification material along mission account lines. How, for example, would we treat procurement of fighters, which can be used either in continental air defense (which would be subject to the Strategic Subcommittee), in a conventional war in Europe (falling subject to the jurisdiction of the Tactical Warfare and NATO Defense Subcommittee), or in third-world contingencies (subject to the jurisdiction of the Sea Power, Force Projection and Regional Defense Subcommittee)?
Decision rules can certainly be constructed to deal with the problem, but they would be arbitrary at best. It should be noted, however, that DoD builds the budget annually along these mission lines, so the task is certainly not impossible. 3. OPTIONS FOR DEALING WITH THE PROBLEM OF THE PREDOMINANCE
OF ANNUAL REVIEW CYCLES o Option 3A —establish a biennial budget process
A biennial budget process would obviously alleviate the problems caused by annual review cycles. However, this option is already described and evaluated as Option 1A in sections D and E. • Option 3B -establish milestone authorizations for major
weapon development Under this option, Congress would authorize milestones in the life of a system rather than one year's activity in the life of that system. Once a program successfully accomplishes one stage-e.g., concept development—the Congress would then authorize the Service to proceed entirely with the next stage-full scale development in this case. If the Congress authorizes that milestone, the defense managers would be free to continue the program, unless costs or performance deviate (by some preset percentage) from the baseline provided at the time of authorization, until its next natural milestone. Once a program is authorized to begin procurement, milestone authorization naturally would extend to multi-year procurement.
This option holds tremendous potential. The Congress would be free from having to review every system every year, and could focus instead on the key programmatic and policy issues before the Congress that year. Program managers could count on stable programs so long as they remain on cost and meet their performance objectives. The Congress would get out of the business of micromanagement, except when major programs are in trouble, where oversight is appropriate and warranted.
Milestone authorizations would also help focus debate on major systems and bring that debate to a conclusion, rather than have it stretched out for years. Currently, troubled systems are debated year after year, often during both the authorization and the appropriation stages. This system would help overcome the need to reopen debate.
There are additional benefits that accrue from this alternative. Under the current system of annual authorizations, the Congress is pressured to make adjustments in programs because of the limited time perspective, which would not be the case with a longer time perspective. For example, minor problems in the early stages of testing are frequently blown entirely out of proportion. During the first years of production on the Mi tank, every little problem was cited as reason to terminate the program. In retrospect, the M1 tank program was a significant success story. Its progress was unnecessarily disrupted because of annual reviews. A system of milestone authorizations would help overcome this problem. If a program were authorized to proceed to its next milestone, unless its cost grows unacceptably or its performance falls consistently short of expectations, minor problems would be kept in perspective and Congress could reject the demands of the perennial critics to disturb a program based on a single test.
There are three problems with milestone authorizations. First, milestone authorizations would still be subject to the perverse effects of unrealistic long-term budgeting in DoD. If DoĎ insists on budgeting to unrealistically high targets in the future, milestone authorizations would not necessarily protect programs from pressure within DoD. Indeed, the primary source of program stretchouts during the past four years has been the Defense Department and not Capitol Hill. Milestone authorizations would certainly be better than annual programs, but they could still fall victim to unrealistic long-term budgeting.
Second, as larger portions of the procurement and R&D accounts would come under milestone authorizations, greater pressure would fall on programs not under those procedures if budget reductions had to be made. Long-term authorizations would limit the flexibility of the Military Departments to make annual adjustments. As is the case with multi-year contracts, budget reductions become concentrated in areas that are not covered by the milestone authorizations. The difficulty this could pose for those programs not covered under milestone authorizations could become so great that the Services would trade away program stability in order to preserve budgeting flexibility.
Third, some have argued that milestone authorizations would delay progress on programs, forcing program managers to wait until Congress has authorized the next stage. This is a specious argument, since under current practice a program manager cannot proceed to the next stage until provided the funds to do so. As such, this system would have the same effect as the current system of annual authorizations in this regard. • Option 3C-require budget submissions to conform to the con
gressional budget resolution This option would require the President to confirm his annual budget submission to the targets specified the previous year in the congressional budget resolution. The President would be free to submit a request for funds in addition to the amount contained in the budget resolution, which would be considered simultaneously with the budget request.
This would help to reduce the artificiality of long-term spending horizons and introduce near-term discipline in budget-making. It would also help discipline the Congress to live up to the budget commitments made in the previous year. Recently the Congress has demanded lower levels for defense spending than were agreed to in the previous year's budget resolution. This process would not preclude the Congress from reneging on its plans, but it would reduce the contentiousness that accompanies the annual budget submission and would provide a basis for the Administration to justify its submission and call on the Congress to acknowledge the requirement for long-term commitments in the area of national security.
The disadvantage of this approach is that the President should be free to submit whatever he believes is required to meet defense requirements. Under current practice, the “out-years” of the First Concurrent Resolution for national defense are set entirely on the basis of artificial assumptions and political requirements, and not on the basis of defense requirements.
It should be acknowledged that the out-years of the Five Year Defense Plan are usually set in the aggregate and not constructed from the bottom up looking at requirements. At the start of its first term, the Administration pledged to increase the defense budget by 7 percent real growth without knowing whether that was sufficient or executable. As such, this option would merely bring the Administration and the Congress together in setting outyear goals. 4. OPTIONS FOR DEALING WITH THE PROBLEM OF CONGRESSIONAL
MICRO-MANAGEMENT OF DEFENSE DEPARTMENT o Option 4A—“package” authorizations
The purpose of this option is to reduce the number of items authorized by the Congress by packaging together those items required to support major systems. Instead of separately authorizing a tank and the 29 different items required to support that tank, Congress could authorize a single package that has 30 separate elements. If Congress chose to add 120 tanks, it would also add 120 tank packages.
Under this approach, the procurement programs would be kept in balance and incremental changes would be tied to realistic requirements. More specifically, the Congress would shift away from excessive detail and more toward the fundamental issues that should guide our procurement plans and priorities.
At this time, the Services lack the management tools to bring together disparate procurement programs into defendable "packages" for authorization. And there would be difficult transition problems since some programs would be ending while others were just beginning. Consequently, some items for the existing stock of deployed equipment would have to be procured outside of packages. The Services would also likely resist this "package" concept since it would show the full cost of a weapon system and give greater ammunition to critics of the system.
o Option 4B—consolidate research and development accounts
The primary advantage of this option is to reduce the proliferation of research and development categories to minimize their exposure to micro-management. This is also primarily the objection to this option since the Congress has tended to focus its revisions more intensively in R&D than in other accounts. It is widely be