2002 CPEO Military List Archive

From: CPEO Moderator <cpeo@cpeo.org>
Date: 16 May 2002 21:32:06 -0000
Reply: cpeo-military
Subject: [CPEO-MEF] GAO: "Encroachment" Not Affecting Readiness
[POSTED BY Steve Taylor  <steve@miltoxproj.org>]
Testimony delivered to Congress this morning rebuts the Pentagon's claim 
that exemptions from environmental and public health laws must be 
enacted immediately to protect military training.
For a couple of years now, the Pentagon has used the term "encroachment" 
to describe its assault on laws that protect the
environment and human health.  Military officials argue that training 
and readiness are being slowly destroyed by urbran sprawl and
environmental and human health laws.
The U.S. General Accounting Office - the investigate arm of Congress 
-testified before the House Government Reform Committee this morning 
(Thursday, May 16) about its new report on military training.  GAO's 
testimony - based on its draft report, which will not be published until 
at least mid-June - states that while encroachment is having some impact 
at some installations, DoD has not demonstrated any effect on troop 
In a section entitled "Effects of Encroachment on Training Readiness Are 
Not Reflected in Reported Data," the report concludes that:
"Despite the loss of some training range capabilities, service readiness 
data do not indicate that encroachment has significantly
affected training readiness.  Even though in testimonies and during many 
other occasions DOD officials have cited encroachment as
preventing the services from training as they would like, DOD's primary 
readiness reporting system does not reflect the extent to
which encroachment is a problem.  In fact, it rarely cites training 
range limitations at all.  Similarly, DOD's quarterly reports to
Congress, which should identify specific readiness problems, hardly ever 
mention encroachment as a problem."
The report also notes that none of the armed services have created a 
comprehensive inventory of training range resources available and 
whether those resources are adequate to meet training needs.  The 
services also do not generally share information about training range 
capabilities with other services, inhibiting the cross-service use of 
ranges to meet training needs.
GAO's testimony is available at
Steve Taylor
Military Toxics Project

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