Satcom 2020: strategic federal budget planning is key

December 07, 2018 News

In a contributed article for Via Satellite, Inmarsat Government’s Senior Vice President of Government Strategy and Policy, Rebecca Cowen-Hirsch, discusses the importance of incorporating commercial satellite communication (COMSATCOM) enhancements into budget planning for Fiscal Year (FY) 2020.

Cowen-Hirsch highlights how prospects for an industry-driven, integrated architecture are continuing to gain traction, to include the FY 2018 National Defense Authorization Act’s major reorganization that shifts acquisition of COMSATCOM Services and oversight to Air Force Space Command. Additionally, she emphasizes that Department of Defense leaders must include procurement as well as Operations and Maintenance (O&M) funding within the Future Years Defense Program (FYDP) to intentionally and strategically acquire COMSATCOM as part of the overall architecture, and not as an afterthought.

“This kind of strategic planning will lay a foundation of optimal SATCOM acquisition: the continuation of O&M within the appropriations budget, supporting a program wrapped around commercially-delivered capabilities. As a result, we will then move closer to the ideal vision of SATCOM Enterprise, leveraging the most capable of both COMSATCOM and MILSATCOM systems,” Cowen-Hirsch wrote.

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