In general, the budget calls for nearly $56.5 billion for air power platforms and systems, and more than $130.1 billion for research and development, which the Pentagon called “an all-time high.”
The budget process is of significant interest to the thousands of Air Force and civilian staff at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, as well as the many local firms that contract with the base.
Proposed defense funding includes $4.1 billion for research and development, almost $5 billion for a space-based missile warning system and nearly $2 billion for a missile defense system poised against ballistic missile threats.
And Biden for the first time will propose that the Department of Veterans Affairs get its own discrete stream of funding for medical purposes, the New York Times reported.
The budget is requesting $135 billion in discretionary funding for the VA, a $31 billion or 29% increase, from the 2021 enacted level. The Biden draft also includes $128 billion in advance appropriations for VA medical care programs in 2024.
The budget proposal is only a first step in the lengthy federal budget process and is not binding on Congress. Defense numbers in particular may get higher. Congress only just approved FY 2022 appropriations in mid-March, less than two weeks ago, after operating on continuing resolutions for half a year.