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$690 billion budget includes money for a Guam move

Date Posted: 2011-05-19

Budget planners with the Armed Services Committee have placed $156 million into the 2012 federal budget to cover some costs for shifting U.S. Marines from Okinawa to Guam.

The committee approved the funds as part of a $690 billion military budget. It will go to the Senate Armed Services Committee next month for an approval vote. The decision to include funding for a portion of the costs involved with relocating 8,600 Marines and their families off Okinawa to Guam comes even as controversy swirls in Washington, Tokyo and Okinawa about relocating an unpopular Marine airbase from one location to another within Okinawa Prefecture. Local residents want the base moved off Okinawa, but a Japan-U.S. agreement to move Marines from Okinawa to Guam is linked to the airfield relocation.

Financing for the Guam move is already tenuous. The government has already cut the appropriations to about one-third of the FY2011 budget size.

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