FORT HOOD — As the deadline for sequestration creeps closer, some of Fort Hood’s construction plans have been halted as the post prepares for an uncertain future.
“Given the uncertainty of what will actually take place in terms of the budget and sequestration, it’s probably premature for Fort Hood officials to comment on the specific impacts, mainly because actual impacts won’t be known until everything is ruled on or enacted,” said Col. Ben Danner, III Corps and Fort Hood Public Affairs officer.
To prepare for the worst, all fiscal year 2013 contracts for sustainment, restoration and maintenance are on hold and at risk. This includes funding for critical renovation projects such as barracks, the Fort Hood Child Development Center, and some motor pools, Danner said.
Contracts already awarded, including the new, $551 million Carl R. Darnall Army Medical Center, Hood Stadium and the unmanned aerial systems hangar are safe. Projects in the 2012 Facilities Restoration Program are also safe.
Fort Hood’s three 2013 Army military construction projects, totaling more than $50 million are still moving forward, but are not yet awarded, Danner said. This construction includes headquarter facilities to support the drone hangar, training aids center and a modified record range.
When the latter two training facilities were approved in the 2013 National Defense Authorization Act in January, they were described by Directorate of Public Works officials as “badly needed.”
Congress has until March 1 to stop sequestration, which automatically cuts the Pentagon’s budget by $46 billion over the next seven months.
U.S. Sen. Ted Cruz, R-Texas, was asked about his plans to deal with sequestration as a member of the Armed Services Committee, but he did not respond as of press time. He spent Thursday night as the guest speaker at the Republican Party of Cuyahoga County Lincoln Day Dinner in Independence, Ohio.