Jim Banks (Republican), a ranking member of the Cyber, Innovative Technologies, and Information Systems Subcommittee of the House Armed Services Committee, said in his opening remarks that he was “proud” to increase the budget of the Defense Innovation Unit. Said. A house version of the National Defense Authorization Act of 2023 demands $ 42.9 million to $ 81 million.
HASC has passed an amendment to Bill 42-17, which approves $ 838 billion in funding to the Pentagon. That amount exceeds the Biden administration’s budget demands, but is about $ 8 billion less than the bill passed by the Senate last week.
“DIU’s mission to bring commercial technology to the sector to improve functionality and deploy more quickly is essential in this era of dual-use technology,” the bank said in a markup on June 22. increase. The reason for doubling the funds from last year’s number. I encourage you to keep up with your budget. ”
The bill also includes DIU’s $ 8 million bump in the Authorized Prototyping Fund for open source intelligence for information effects and information environments for artificial intelligence and machine learning.
Michael Brown, Retired Director of the Defense Innovation Unit, said these funds, when appropriate, “provide greater support to international allies and partners and ensure that their technology is included in ours. Consideration that it can be used to continue to expand the capabilities of government agencies. ”
“We have made a lot of progress, and I think we have created some blueprints for what we can do in the next step by ensuring that we integrate what we have done with more mainstream acquisitions. “Mr. Brown said on June 22 at a virtual event with the Center for a New American Security, a Washington, DC-based think tank.
But the debate over how Congress will track its expansion is whether the Defense Innovation Unit must explain to Congress how to reach out to economically disadvantaged communities when opening new office locations. Has evolved into a discussion about.
Congress has given the Secretary of Defense a green light to expand the Secretary of Defense’s footsteps nationwide in the 2022 Secretary of Defense Bill. This year, Congressman Veronica Escobar (D-Texas) explained “what steps DIU has taken to expand support for economically disadvantaged communities” by January 2023. We wanted to include the economically disadvantaged communities in the expansion with a modification that requires.That community
There is no DIU and no strategy to keep it going. ”
The amendment was adopted 30-28, but some Republican committees opposed it. The bank said the measure “makes DIUs span more missions and let them do more things that have nothing to do with the missions.”
However, with the Pentagon’s top line increasing significantly, Anthony Browne (D-Md.) Is not burdened with a briefing on what innovation groups were doing in the licensed expansion. Stated.
“We are trying to raise our defense budget by $ 36 billion. I think it’s $ 37. [billion] Is the briefing a hassle? Each and every member of this committee, both Democrats and Republicans, experienced a stumbling block and unresponsive Pentagon when we asked for information. Sometimes they are sensitive. In many cases this is not the case. I’m asking for a briefing. ”
Chairman Adam Smith (D-Wash.) Said that outreach outside of known technology hubs is central to DIU’s mission.
“The idea wasn’t just born of a wealthy and wealthy region,” Smith said. “”[They] I’m not just from Silicon Valley. They didn’t just come from Bellevue. They come from all over the country and I think it is appropriate to encourage DIUs to find them. I think that is the core of their mission. “