Defense Department poorly managed design, construction of F-35 fighter, auditor says

By Douglas Birch

A detailed new report offers some insight into why the most costly weapon system in U.S. history has so many problems and defects.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Government Accountability Office":

"… on how not to run a major acquisition effort.” That was the same month a Government Accountability Office auditor warned that paying the F-35 program’s bills could break the Pent …"

The huge drone that could not be grounded

By Richard H.P. Sia and Alexander Cohen

A major defense contractor used its connections on Capitol Hill to keep a troubled drone aircraft aloft at a cost of billions of dollars.

Excerpts from this story referencing "chief":

"… Deputy Defense Secretary Ashton Carter, then the Pentagon’s procurement chief, who nonetheless told Congress that its continuation “is essential to na …"

"… gorous testing from October 2010 through January 2011 led the Pentagon’s chief weapons tester to conclude that the Block 30 was unreliable. The Block 30 …"

"… respond to repeated requests for comment. Gen. Mark Welsh, the Air Force chief of staff, responded that the hourly cost was “about the same” but argu …"

"… ldn’t keep flying both of them, Gen. Norton Schwartz, then the Air Force chief of staff, responded that “if resources were not an issue or were less an …"

F35 program may be unaffordable, auditor says

By Richard H.P. Sia

The most costly military program in history might wind up busting the Pentagon budget.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Dick Durbin":

"… ment,” Sullivan said, responding to questions from Subcommittee Chairman Dick Durbin, D-Ill. Sullivan told the panel maintaining this sustained level of fundin …"

US Airways strengthens lobbying force

By Dave Levinthal

US Airways hires pair of new government relations firms to help navigate merger with American Airlines.

Pentagon criticizes F-35 contractors but hands over the dough

By Douglas Birch and R. Jeffrey Smith

UPDATE: Early flight tests show multiple problems but the program gets new funds just before sequester.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Pentagon":

"… of the cockpit? These shortcomings are  listed in a 48-page, Feb. 15 Pentagon report obtained by the Project on Government Oversight, a nonprofit group …"

"… hington, and published online this week. Signed by J. Michael Gilmore, the Pentagon’s chief testing officer, the report amounted to a detailed and damning …"

"… own to zero hour on the budget sequester, the big contractors building the Pentagon’s over-budget, under-performing, and designed-on-the-fly F-35 Joint Stri …"

"… northern or southern hemisphere. But they managed to get a check from the Pentagon anyway. The funds arrived a few days after a rhetorical shot heard halfwa …"

Helium balloon maker shows lobbyists love

By Dave Levinthal

Gas shortage prompts helium balloon company to hire help as Valentine's Day nears.

A close call for the world’s most advanced warplane?

By Douglas Birch

Fuel line leaks and a special vulnerability to lightning are the latest troubles for the Pentagon's advanced fighter jet

Excerpts from this story referencing "Arizona":

"… e F-35  Joint Strike Fighter being tested at air bases in Florida and Arizona, as well as Lockheed Martin’s production factory in Fort Worth, Texas. T …"

Documents show Air Force neglected concerns about F-22 pilot safety

Documents show Air Force neglected concerns about pilot safety

F-35 deputy sees challenges ahead

By R. Jeffrey Smith and Aaron Mehta

New F-35 program deputy gives a candid assessment of flaws in the most expensive weapon in Pentagon history.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Maryland":

"… , warned an Air Force Association audience on Sept. 17 at National Harbor, Maryland, that “some of you may cringe at what I say.” Then he disclosed that t …"

Pentagon efforts to straighten out bookkeeping face billion-dollar cost overruns

By Zach Toombs

Software troubles cast doubt on Panetta’s promise of an accounting of expenses by 2017.

Bouncing too much to find the enemy

By R. Jeffrey Smith

The F35 is having trouble with its high-tech helmets and structural cracks and skin repairs and tailhooks and more.

Excerpts from this story referencing "Lockheed Martin":

"… e Pentagon has increasingly been at loggerheads with the chief contractor, Lockheed Martin, over the work ahead. Already, cost overruns on four early production cont …"

Costly work ahead for F-22

By Aaron Mehta

America's newest fighter jet needs years of upgrades and repairs, but pilots are not keen to fly them.

Will the $55 billion bomber program fly?

By David Axe

The pricetag is at least $55 billion, the design is unsettled and the mission is controversial.

Excerpts from this story referencing "George Behan":

"… requests for interviews. But his plan attracted bipartisan House support: George Behan, a staffer for Rep. Norm Dicks, D-Wash., the House Armed Services Committe …"

Windfalls of war: Taxpayers get hammered by Pentagon attempts to "one-stop-shop"

By Sharon Weinberger

Pentagon abused its sole-source authority on weapons from tankers to choppers

BARR battle: Obama administration to make more corporate jet data public despite flak

By Corbin Hiar

The Obama administration's plan to make even more data available on corporate jet flights is drawing heat from some strange bedfellows

Excerpts from this story referencing "Mark Warner":

"… enate’s General Aviation Caucus signed onto the letter, along with Sens. Mark Warner (D-Va.) and Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.), who are not affiliated with the group …"

Boeing pocketed millions by overcharging Army, IG report finds

By Ben Wieder

Boeing overcharged the Army $13 million for helicopter parts

Half of Pentagon’s acquisition programs marred by poor management

By Laurel Adams

Over the past two years, Pentagon spending has increased by $135 billion, growing to a total of $1.68 trillion. Almost half of the increase

GAO: TSA screening of air cargo can’t be verified

By Laurel Adams

The Transportation Security Administration reported last August that it met its mandate to screen 100 percent of air cargo. But the Governme

Excerpts from this story referencing "Security":

"… overed from the investigations. (DHHS Inspector General) …"

National Archives electronic records system is years behind, millions over budget

By Laurel Adams

A major National Archives project to preserve and provide access to federal records, 10 years in the making, faces massive delays and cost o

Excerpts from this story referencing "Government Accountability Office":

"… 005 with a target date for completion by the end of this year. Instead the Government Accountability Office now estimates the project will be completed in March 2017 at a cost of $1. …"

"… life cycle costs.Following are other new watchdog reports released by the Government Accountability Office (GAO), various federal Offices of Inspector General (OIG), and other gover …"

Howard "Buck" McKeon — Armed Services Committee

By Amy Biegelsen

Rep. Howard McKeon (R-Calif.) answers to the nickname “Buck,” an appropriate moniker for the man about to help oversee one of the biggest ch

Excerpts from this story referencing "Las Vegas":

"… Keon’s southern California district lies nestled between Los Angeles and Las Vegas. It is home to a number of military installations, including Fort Irwin, t …"

Lobbyists stage Capitol Hill dogfight over joint strike fighter engine

By Nick Schwellenbach

An intense spending fight over a second engine for the Joint Strike Fighter has partners General Electric and Rolls Royce and rival Pratt &

Excerpts from this story referencing "White House":

"… was wasteful. Since then, Congress has annually overruled the Pentagon and White House by adding funds to continue a second engine’s development, with the inte …"

"… of the JSF engine.In the case of the F-22, intense lobbying by Gates, the White House, and influential Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman Carl Levin (D-Mi …"

Senator Richard Shelby goes to bat for major financial benefactor

By Josh Israel and Nick Schwellenbach

The unusual “blanket hold” placed on Obama administration nominees by Senator Richard Shelby, represents an effort to support a firm that ha

New life for the F-22 Raptor

By Nick Schwellenbach

Faced with the potential of massive job losses and under heavy lobbying pressure earlier this year, the powerful House Armed Services Commit

FAA reauthorization ‘stuck on the tarmac’

By Matthew Lewis

The House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee this week introduced another bill to reauthorize the currently leaderless and conflict

Excerpts from this story referencing "House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee":

"… he administration is currently negotiating with its targeted candidate. …"

FAA inspectors cozy up to airlines

By The Center for Public Integrity

Weak oversight on flight safety a symptom of close FAA/industry relations

Excerpts from this story referencing "House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee":

"… ut separate probes by the OIG, the U.S. Office of Special Counsel, and the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee found alarming evidence that the necessary integrity was often missing, an …"

"… or management knew about the Southwest situation for years. Staff from the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee interviewed additional FAA inspectors who said they sometimes do not bring …"

FAA in the dark on maintenance

By The Center for Public Integrity

Non-certified repair facilities are performing important maintenance work on airplanes without FAA oversight

Excerpts from this story referencing "official":

"… at I think have improved the effectiveness of our oversight," a senior DOT official told Congress in 2007. An FAA spokesman noted the agency's responses to IG …"

NORAD, FAA unprepared for aerial attack

By The Center for Public Integrity

Civilian and military airspace defenders were unprepared to handle hijacked planes on 9/11

Excerpts from this story referencing "Aviation":

"… ilian and military defenders of the nation's airspace — FAA [the Federal Aviation Administration] and NORAD [the North American Aerospace Defense Command] …"

Failing to modernize air traffic control

By The Center for Public Integrity

Attempts to update air traffic control has failed even as technology remains decades out of date

Excerpts from this story referencing "Obama administration":

"… both the funding and the continued development of NextGen an issue for the Obama administration. “The next president needs to make the NextGen initiative a national pri …"

Close calls on the runway

By The Center for Public Integrity

Evan as incidents of near-misses on runways, the FAA struggles to update safety plans

Excerpts from this story referencing "National Transportation Safety Board":

"… t, vehicles, or persons create a collision hazard — have appeared on the National Transportation Safety Board’s (NTSB) Most Wanted list of issues demanding improvement ever since 199 …"

Record delays in air travel

By The Center for Public Integrity

Plane delays continue to increase but no solution in sight

Excerpts from this story referencing "Aviation":

"… tor General called for “urgently needed” improvements from the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). But long-term answers to chronic air travel delays r …"