White House Misses Sequestration Deadline; DoD Will See 11% Cut

September 7, 2012

The Obama administration has missed a key deadline to submit a report on how it would implement $109 billion in across-the-board budget cuts scheduled to take effect Jan. 2.

The administration was supposed to send to Congress by Sept. 6 detailed information on every account that would be affected under sequestration, including how much money would be cut from every program, project and activity level.

But that day, the administration told Federal Times the report will come “late next week.” The administration said it needed more time to address the complex issues involved in planning for sequestration.

Washington is hungry for details on how the government plans to absorb these cuts, which are required by last year’s Budget Control Act unless Congress and the administration agree on a path to reducing budget deficits by $1.2 trillion through 2021. Congress last month passed the Sequestration Transparency Act mandating the report. But there have been few official details released so far.

Frank Kendall, undersecretary of Defense for acquisition, technology and logistics, said at a conference Sept. 5 that the Pentagon would have to cut 11 percent of its budget next year. And the across-the-board nature of these cuts would be “devastating,” he said, and leave the Defense Department with almost no flexibility.

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