ALA Executive Briefing
Jan. 2, 2015

19. Senator Warner opposes cuts to military commissaries in Hampton Roads
Daily Press
From March 7: Sen. Mark R. Warner wants to block proposed cuts to commissaries, a popular option for military families in Hampton Roads, because a high-level commission has yet to issue a report on the larger issue of compensation and benefits. Warner and Sen. Saxby Chambliss, R-Ga., have introduced legislation to restore a 70-percent cut to the commissary budget included in the 2015 Pentagon budget recently introduced. More

17. A 3-horse race emerges for HASC gavel
Defense News
From Jan. 31: The race for the House Armed Services Committee gavel is underway, and sources see the panel's vice chairman as the odds-on favorite despite an expected challenge from an up-and-coming rival. More

16. Concerns arise about opening online exchanges to veterans
Marine Corps Times
From Sept. 5: While giving all honorably discharged veterans online exchange shopping privileges would be an added benefit, there are questions within the Defense and Veterans Affairs departments about whether some of the profits should also go back to veterans' programs. More

15. McCain to target 'fiscal irresponsibility,' mulls SASC subcommittee shake-up
Defense News
From Nov. 14: The incoming chairman of the US Senate Armed Services Committee wants to crack down on over-priced weapon programs and shake up SASC's subpanels. More

14. Move over millennials, Generation Z is on the scene
Direct Marketing News
From Oct. 3: The Alliance for a Healthier Generation, founded by the American Heart Association and Clinton Foundation, is teaming up with representatives from American Beverage Association, The Coca-Cola Co., Dr Pepper Snapple Group and PepsiCo Inc. to announce an agreement to work toward decreasing beverage calories in the American diet. More

13. Security Insiders: High time for Congress to cave on closing military bases
National Journal
From Feb. 21: It's high time for Congress to agree to the Pentagon's request to close military bases, a whopping 91 percent of National Journal's National Security Insiders said. Lawmakers, even as they search for ways to cut spending, have rebuffed the Defense Department's requests to close military installations it no longer needs as the military downsizes after long wars in Iraq and Afghanistan — to the dismay of the pool of national security experts. "Enough already," said one Insider. More

12. Bypassing Congress on defense cuts
From Feb. 7: The Pentagon has learned that if it can't go through Congress to get what it wants, sometimes it's best to try going around. Two of the Defense Department's biggest long-term budget priorities — cutting troop compensation and closing bases — also happen to be politically radioactive for lawmakers sensitive about home-district economies and accusations of hurting the military. More

11. More US base consolidations on the way in Europe
Stars and Stripes
From June 6: Recommendations for more base closures and consolidations in Europe will be submitted to Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel in a matter of weeks as part of an ongoing effort to shed unneeded facilities on the Continent, according to the Defense Department. More