DoD seeks plan to shut all U.S. commissaries…(OMG!!!)
By Karen Jowers
Nov. 21, 2013
Defense officials have reportedly asked the Defense Commissary Agency to develop a plan to close all U.S. commissaries — about three-fourths of its stores, according to a resale community source familiar with details of a meeting with representatives of the Joint Staff and Pentagon comptroller’s office.
The source, who spoke on condition of anonymity, said the meeting was held within the last few weeks and was part of preparations for the fiscal 2015 DoD budget request that is due out on February.
That DeCA has been asked to prepare such a draft plan does not mean commissaries would close anytime soon. Even if such a plan was included in the defense budget request for fiscal 2015 — almost a year away — it would have to be approved by Congress, where many lawmakers would oppose it.
The Military Coalition, comprised of more than 30 military and veterans advocacy groups sharing a common agenda, also would fiercely oppose such a plan.
Still, the fact that defense officials want DeCA to draft a plan for how it potentially would carry out such a move is another sign of the heavy budget pressures weighing on the Pentagon as a result of sequestration.
The Defense Department had no direct comment on the commissary initiative. But Pentagon spokeswoman Joy Crabaugh said Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel “has made it clear on numerous occasions that all cost-cutting efforts need to be on the table” in order for DoD to meet the sequestration caps mandated under the 2011 Budget Control Act.”