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In February, the Department of Defense released its budget request for the 2013 fiscal year. Of particular note was the allocation for Military Construction (MilCon).

According to the DoD, MIL-CON accounts "provide funds for new construction, construction improvements, planning and design, and host nation support."

Additionally, "projects funded by these accounts include facilities for operations, training, maintenance, research and development, supply, medical care and force protection, as well as unaccompanied housing, utilities infrastructure and land acquisition."

The DoD's proposed request for MilCon in the FY 2013 budget was approximately $11.2 billion, a decrease from the enacted FY 2012 budget of approximately $13.6 billion and the enacted FY 2011 budget of approximately $17.4 billion (see table 1). The comptroller stated that the FY 2013 MilCon investment is "less than investments in prior years until the Department reassesses its investment strategy next year, when the impacts of forced structure changes on infrastructure requirements has been assessed."

The DoD breaks down MilCon into three main components: General MilCon, Base Realignment and Closure (BRAC) and Family Housing. General MilCon (FY 2013 proposed $9.1 billion) consists of the "beddown" of weapons systems, providing operational and training facilities, and recapitalizing aging facilities and modernizing facilities. BRAC (FY 2013 proposed $0.5 billion) funds environmental and caretaker costs for properties not yet conveyed in prior rounds. Family Housing (FY 2013 proposed $1.7 billion) funds construction, improvements, operation and maintenance of government-owned family housing worldwide to provide quality, affordable housing to the U.S. military and their families.

The top five states for MilCon and Family Housing per total obligational authority - as well as two of their main projects of note - for the DoD's FY 2013 budget are as follows:

California ($700,365,000)

  • Camp Pendelton (Navy) - $88,110,000
  • Comm. Information Systems Ops Complex - $78,897,000
  • MV22 Aviation Simulator Building - $4,139,000
  • San Jacinto Road Extension - $5,074,000
  • Defense Logistics Agency (Air National Guard) - $119,063,000
  • Def Fuel Support Point (San Diego), replace fuel pier - $91,563,000
  • Edwards Air Force Base, replace fuel storage - $27,500,000

Virginia ($486,189,000)

  • Fort Belvoir (Army) - $94,000,000
  • Secure Admin / Operations Facility - $94,000,000
  • Arlington National Cemetery (Army) - $84,000,000
  • Cemetery Expansion Millennium Site - $84,000,000

North Carolina ($458,242,000)

  • Fort Bragg (Army) - $98,000,000
  • Aerial Gunnery Range - $42,000,000
  • Infrastructure - $30,000,000
  • Unmanned Aerial Vehicle Complex - $26,000,000
  • Fort Bragg (SOF) - $100,422,000
  • SOF Battalion Operations Facility - $40,481,000
  • SOF Civil Affairs Battalion Complex - $31,373,000
  • SOF Support Addition - $3,875,000
  • SOF Sustainment Brigade Complex - $24,693,000

Hawaii ($366,099,000)

  • Keneohe Bay (Navy) - $97,310,000
  • Aircraft Staging Area - $14,680,000
  • MV-22 Hangar and Infrastructure - $82,630,000
  • Schofield Barracks (Army) - $96,000,000
  • Barracks - $41,000,000
  • Barracks - $55,000,000

New York ($364,730,000)

  • U.S. Military Academy (Army) - $192,000,000
  • Cadet Barracks - $192,000,000
  • Fort Drum (Army) - $95,000,000
  • Aircraft Maintenance Hangar - $95,000,000

So what does the DoD's proposed military construction budget mean for contractors? For one thing, although less than it has been in previous fiscal years, MilCon will play a significant role in upcoming construction opportunities throughout 2013. FY 2013 MilCon projects are available in 42 states, meaning that contractors across the nation will be put to work to complete the proposed projects.

Despite the decrease in residential and nonresidential construction that has been plaguing the country since the recession, these military construction opportunities provide a bright spot in the face of construction in America.

What are your thoughts on the proposed military construction budget? Please post your comments.

For more information on military construction opportunities, please refer to the FY 2013 Department of Defense Budget, Construction Programs (C-1).