The Senate Armed Services Committee approved its version of the fiscal 2013 defense spending bill Thursday, authorizing a $525.8 billion base budget for the Defense Department and $88.2 billion for overseas contingencies.
According to David Alexander report for Reuters, lawmakers also gave the Energy Department $17.3 billion for its nuclear weapons programs.
This version would reduce the civilian workforce as well as service contractor funding by five percent over five years in order to save $5 billion, a Senate official told Alexander.
Lawmakers rejected measures that would reduce the Air National Guard and Air Force and permitted certain aircraft reductions for the Air Force.
Alexander reports the bill includes a freeze on some of the Air Force’s proposed cuts until the next fiscal year since officials perceived the proposal lacked necessary evidence.
The approved bill is scheduled for debate in the full Senate in June, after which it will have to be reconciled with the House-approved version of the bill.