The Pentagon’s Fiscal 2014 budget request proposes abandoning the Operationally Responsive Space Office in favor of integrating its business models and rapid-fielding practices into the service’s normal space acquisition processes, Gen. William Shelton, head of Air Force Space Command, told lawmakers. This is the second straight year that the Pentagon has requested this; Congress rejected the idea for Fiscal 2013. “What we’re trying to do is inculcate the ORS lessons learned into the mainstream programs at the Space and Missile System Center,” said Shelton when asked about the proposal during the April 24 hearing of the Senate Armed Services Committee’s strategic forces panel. SMC is the Air Force’s space acquisition arm located at Los Angeles AFB, Calif. Shelton said tightening budgets also influenced the proposal. “This is just a matter of how much budget we’ve got,” he said. “Rather than having a dedicated office with a dedicated budget,” the Air Force would incorporate ORS methods into SMC, he said. The ORS office resides at Kirtland AFB, N.M.
The U.S. supports “a stronger and more capable” European defense, Defense Secretary Lloyd J. Austin III said during an Oct. 22 press conference in Brussels—but that defense should not duplicate the functions and capabilities of the NATO alliance.