President George W. Bush's fiscal year 2004 defense budget request is $379.9 billion, an increase of $15.3 billion from fiscal year 2003. The Army's $93.9 billion portion of the budget breaks down as follows:
In an effort to improve the quality of life for military personnel, soldiers will get an average 4.1 percent pay raise. The new budget would also increase housing allowances, reducing out-of-pocket expenses for military personnel from 7.5 percent in fiscal year (FY) 2003 to 3.5 percent in FY 2004, continuing the Army's move to eliminate out-of-pocket costs entirely by FY 2005. The budget maintains end strengths of 480,000 active component, 350,000 Army National Guard and 205,000 Army Reserve soldiers. The authorized civilian workforce is 222,761 full-time equivalents.
The FY 2004 budget supports the Army's plan to maintain its warfighting and readiness through its training, mobility and sustainment programs. It funds operational tempo at 13.1 live flying hours per aircrew per month for the active component, and nine hours for the reserve components and funds 913 Army tank miles. Ten brigade rotations for the National Training Center, ten through the Joint Readiness Training Center and five through the Combat Maneuver Training Center are fully funded. The Battle Command Training Program will conduct three corps Warfighter exercises and train eight active component division command and staff groups.
The budget would increase funding in initial entry training, professional development, off-duty voluntary education and flight training. With the implementation of Flight School XXI, aviators would spend 27-40 additional hours training in advanced "go to war" aircraft. To improve on strategic mobility, the Army is realigning and upgrading brigade sets to be consistent with the global prepositioning strategy. Wartime stock in Europe is being reconfigured and excess stocks are being redistributed to Southwest Asia and the …