WASHINGTON, Dec. 3, 2014 – Deputy Defense Secretary Bob Work held discussions today with members of the Council of Governors regarding the Fiscal Year 2016 budget and other fiscal initiatives, Pentagon Press Secretary Navy Rear Adm. John Kirby told reporters today.
“This morning, the deputy secretary, Bob Work, held a conference call with seven governors from the Council of Governors,” he said.
“We also had about 10 or so representatives from the Department of Defense,” Kirby said, “… to discuss Fiscal Year ‘16 budget preparations and the Army Aviation Restructuring Initiative.”
Kirby said Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel also briefly attended the meeting.
The defense secretary, he said, stopped by for a little while to join in the conversation and emphasize the importance of the relationship between the Defense Department and the Council of Governors.
The Council of Governors is a 10-member bipartisan group appointed by the president to serve as a mechanism for governors and key federal officials to address matters pertaining to the National Guard, homeland defense and defense support to civil authorities.
Kirby said both representatives of both parties — DoD and the Council of Governors — agreed about the negative impact that the return of sequestration would have on the department and on some of the states.
This includes, he said, the possibility of further reductions in military force structure.
Regarding the Army Aviation Restructuring Initiative, Kirby said both groups also agreed that the process by which DoD took on the initiative was “objective and transparent.”
A comprehensive look, he said, was also given to the cost and use of both active-duty and reserve component AH-64 Apache helicopters, with both sides agreeing to keep the dialogue going.
“This is an important relationship that Secretary Hagel has worked hard at, and will continue to work hard at with the Council of Governors,” Kirby said.