Ellen Lord: DoD Must Consolidate Military Construction Funds to Meet ICBM Modernization Deadlines

Ellen Lord: DoD Must Consolidate Military Construction Funds to Meet ICBM Modernization Deadlines
Hon. Ellen Lord Department of Defense

Hon. Ellen Lord, the Department of Defense’s (DoD) acquisition head and a 2020 Wash100 Award recipient, said the Pentagon seeks to streamline military construction allocations to support the Ground Based Strategic Deterrent (GBSD) missile modernization program.

Lord, who serves as undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment, told the Senate Armed Services Committee at a recent hearing that Congress should consider allowing flexibility in military construction funding to meet schedules for the GBSD program, Defense News reported Saturday.

The DoD intends to update 450 launch facilities and 45 launch centers comprising the intercontinental ballistic missile (ICBM) infrastructure to make way for the updated GBSD weapon.

Lord’s office is currently negotiating with Congress on legislation that would allow projects at launch facilities in one location to be consolidated into a single contract.

Jessica Maxwell, a spokesperson for the DoD, told Defense News in a statement that consolidating funding for ICBM infrastructure updates will help speed up the system's transition into GBSD and achieve the 2036 deadline for full operational capability.

“Our job in acquisition and sustainment [is] to not transition programmatic risks over to operational risk, and I’m afraid if we don’t move some of that money out of MILCON, that’s exactly what we would be doing,” Lord noted.

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