Air Force C-17 Aircraft Procurement: Background and Issues for Congress
LIBRARY OF CONGRESS WASHINGTON DC CONGRESSIONAL RESEARCH SERVICE
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Procurement of C-17 airlift aircraft began in FY1988, and a total of 213 have been procured through FY2009, including 8 that were procured in the recently enacted FY2009 supplemental appropriations act H.R. 2346P.L. 111-32 of June 24, 2009. The Administrations proposed FY2010 defense budget proposes to end C-17 procurement and does not request any funding for the procurement of additional C-17s. The Administration argues that enough C-17s have now been procured to meet future operational needs. Supporters of procuring additional C-17s in FY2010 believe additional C-17s will be needed to meet future operational needs. The issue of how much airlift capability will be needed in the future is currently being examined in a congressionally mandated study being done by the Institute for Defense Analyses IDA and in a separate Department of Defense DOD study called the Mobility Capabilities and Requirements Study 2016 MCRS-16, which is due to be completed by the end of 2009. The primary issue for Congress in FY2010 is whether to procure additional C-17s. An additional issue is whether to pass legislation relating to the airlift aircraft force structure. The House and Senate Armed Services Committees, in their markups of the FY2010 defense authorization bill H.R. 2647S. 1390, recommended no funding for the procurement of additional C-17s. Section 134 of H.R. 2647 would require the Secretary of the Air Force, in coordination with the Director of the Air National Guard, to submit to the congressional defense committees, at least 120 days before a C-5 airlift aircraft is retired, a report on the proposed force structure and basing of C-5 and C-17 aircraft. Section 135 of H.R. 2647 would amend 10 USC 8062g1 to state that, effective October 1, 2009, the Secretary of the Air Force shall maintain a total inventory of C-5s and C-17s of not less than 316 aircraft.
- Transport Aircraft
- Economics and Cost Analysis