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Greenert: New Defense Bill Will Halve Navy’s Budget Cuts

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Adm. Jonathan Greenert gives an April, 1 2013 video message to the fleet. US Navy Photo

Adm. Jonathan Greenert gives an April, 1 2013 video message to the fleet. US Navy Photo

The Fiscal Year 2013 defense bill, signed into law last week, will halve the $ 9 billion in budget cuts the Navy it feared it would have to absorb, said Adm. Jonathan Greenert in a message to the Navy released on Monday.

Earlier this year the Navy faced a double set of funding reductions from a Continuing Resolution and the sequestration. The CR threat has dissipated, however the 10 percent in sequestration cuts will stand.

“Because we have a spending bill, that $9 billion shortfall has been cut in half,” Greenert said.

“We’re going to move ahead in a very deliberate fashion and decide what’s important and fund those most important things. Money will be distributed to the fleet and important operations can get underway.”

Before the bill was signed last week, the Navy said it would be unable to fund depot level maintenance for aircraft and ships. It also reduced the aircraft carrier presence in the Middle East and delayed the refueling and complex overhaul of USS Abraham Lincoln (CVN-72).

Following the spending bill’s passage, the Navy issued a contract to Huntington Ingalls Industries for the Lincoln refueling.

Greenert assured the fleet that the active duty manpower would remain stable.

With Fiscal Year 2013 stabilized, the Pentagon is looking ahead to the presentation of the Fiscal Year 2014 budget. The budget will likely be made public next week.