The House Armed Services’ Readiness Subcommittee once again rejects the Obama administration’s request to hold a BRAC round in 2017, according to its portion of the fiscal 2016 defense authorization bill.The language in the draft bill stating that, “Nothing in this act shall be construed to authorize an additional Base Realignment and Closure round,” affirms the committee’s intent to reject DOD’s request to conduct a BRAC round in 2017, the panel states. The panel marks up its section of the annual policy bill today. The draft bill also calls for the department to prepare force structure plans and an infrastructure assessment that could be used to determine the level of excess capacity. The language, however, does not directly link the analysis to a justification for a new BRAC round.Last year, the panel requested an analysis of excess infrastructure, but it tied the analysis to a determination of the need for a round of base closures. That provision ultimately was removed from the final version of the FY 2015 authorization bill.The infrastructure assessment included in this year’s policy measure is largely similar, however, and calls for DOD to submit:20-year force structure plans for each of the services;an inventory of worldwide installations;a description of the infrastructure necessary to support the force structure plans;a discussion of categories of excess infrastructure and infrastructure capacity, and the secretary’s objective for the reduction of such excess capacity; andan assessment of the value of retaining certain excess infrastructure to accommodate contingency, mobilization and surge requirements.And similar to language in the House Appropriations Committee’s report accompanying the FY 2016 military construction-veteran affairs spending bill, the readiness panel adds the following special considerations for determining the extent of excess capacity:the anticipated continuing need for and availability of installations outside the United States, taking into account current and potential future restrictions on their use; andany efficiencies that may be gained from joint tenancy by more than one branch at an installation or by reorganizing two or more installations into a single facility.The readiness subcommittee’s portion of the authorization bill is available on the committee website. Dan Cohen AUTHOR
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Kolkata: The Kolkata Municipal Corporation (KMC) has already issued notices to 52 old and dangerous buildings in the city under the amended Building Laws, Section 412A of KMC Act, 1980. The hearing is in final stages for 13 such buildings, Mayor Sovan Chatterjee said during the monthly meeting of the civic body on Tuesday.It may be mentioned that the amendment empowers the civic body to acquire old buildings whose owners refuse to repair them.The civic body will give notices to the owners and in case they are tenanted structures, will ask them to sit with the tenants and get them repaired at their own expense. Also Read – Rain batters Kolkata, cripples normal life”In as many as 212 cases, we have already got the approval of the Municipal Building Committee (MBC) to slap notices under the amended Section 412A of KMC Act, 1980,” Chatterjee said, answering a query from Left councillor Debasish Mukherjee, on the implementation of the amended building rules.Chatterjee further maintained that the maximum number of notices have been slapped at Borough 4, which includes 37 old and dangerous buildings. Borough 2 comes second in the list, with notices served to 10 buildings, while the number of notices served in Boroughs 6, 7, 8 and 12 are 4, 1, 1 and 1 respectively. Also Read – Speeding Jaguar crashes into Mercedes car in Kolkata, 2 pedestrians killedThe building department is yet to serve notices in boroughs 1, 3, 9, 10, 11, 12, 14, 15 and 16.The civic body has already demolished some buildings in the city, particularly in Central Kolkata, since the month of July.A drive for pulling down a building at 80 Bentinck Street was undertaken on Tuesday. It may be mentioned that when a KMC team had gone for demolition of the building in the morning, they were prevented from doing so and the occupants claimed that they would take up repair work on their own, in consultation with the owner. However, even after late afternoon, there was no trace of the building owner. “The building was posing a major risk to a number of businessmen who were occupying the ground floor and also the pedestrians walking on the footpath. So, we have began the work for pulling it down,” an official of the building department said.In the year 2017, 22 people had died after portions of old buildings fell on them. In 2018 too, there have been some deaths due to building collapses.