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Webb calls for congressional hearings into defense cuts in Virginia

Anita Kumar

Sen. Jim Webb (D) Monday called for the Senate Committee on Armed Services to hold hearings on Defense Secretary Robert Gates' decision to shutter the Joint Forces Command, a military installation employing more than 6,000 in Hampton Roads.

"The requested hearing should address the full scope of the initiatives that Secretary Gates announced, to include the significant growth in the size of the DoD and military departments' staffs from the department's creation until the present day," Webb wrote in his letter. "Although many of the Secretary's directed actions appear to be well within his authority, others are more properly addressed as part of the normal budgeting and programming cycle."

Webb, a committee member and chairman of the personnel subcommittee, called Gates's lack of prior consultation with Congress on his recommendations "deeply troubling."

Last week, a subcommittee of the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, at the request of Rep. Gerry Connolly (D-Va.), agreed to hold hearings on Gates' decision to cut the Pentagon's military contracting budget by 10 percent a year for the next three years.

Virginia's congressional delegation has been protesting the Defense Department budget shifts since they were announced by Gates last week. Webb and Sen. Mark Wark joined a bipartisan group of congressmen from the Hampton Roads area Friday in signing a letter challenging Gates's decision to close the Joint Forces Command.

By Anita Kumar  |  August 16, 2010; 3:54 PM ET
Categories:  Anita Kumar , Gerald E. Connolly , James Webb , Mark Warner  
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Cut that budget, unless the fat is in my backyard!

Posted by: Anglo_Rider | August 16, 2010 6:31 PM | Report abuse

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