The Air Force budget of $156.3 billion is a 2.3% increase over FY21 enacted levels, and the Space Force budget of $17.4 billion is a 13.1% increase over FY21 enacted levels.
The FY 2022 Air Force Operation & Maintenance (O&M) budget includes a more than $2.3 billion dollar increase from the FY 2021 enacted funding. The growth from FY21 is largely driven by increases to Civilian Pay, Mission Support, Installation Support, and Facility Sustainment, Restoration and Modernization. This budget also prioritizes investment in training programs and takes action to address the difficult challenges of sexual assault, suicide, and disparate treatment of Airmen.
The Department of the Air Force Military Personnel (MILPERS) budget grows Total Force end-strength by an additional 3,425 Total Force Military personnel in FY 2022. The main growth driver is attributed to the retention of medical personnel and 1,966 growth to Space Force end-strength. The FY 2022 Air Force budget includes $929.8 million for Space Force guardians; funding will be transferred once an integrated Department of the Air Force pay system is fully operational. Additionally, this budget invests funding to attract and retain high-quality recruits.
The FY 2022 Air Force Research, Development, Test and Evaluation (RDT&E) budget increases by $2.2 billion. The budget invests in modernization efforts for nuclear programs, air superiority with Next Generation Air Dominance and hypersonic capabilities, and continues to build the Advanced Battle Management System to connect the Joint Force.
The Air Force Procurement budget decreases as a result of the Air Force balancing sustainment and modernization with future procurement. The FY 2022 budget procures aircraft to ensure near-term readiness while advancing fifth generation aircraft to outpace competitors. Also, this budget continues to transition Air Force munitions funding from programs supporting current operations into programs focused on near-peer competitors like the Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile and hypersonic weapons.
The Air Force Military Construction (MILCON) budget increase by $1.1 billion in FY 2022. This budget focuses on accelerating installation readiness, resilience, and modernization, and continues to prioritize Planning and Design funds to reinforce program stability and consistency. This budget request continues to display the DAF’s commitment to take care of the force and their families while also focusing investments on modern weapon system beddowns and enhancements to global warfighter capabilities.
The FY 2022 Air Force Direct War and Enduring Costs (Formerly Overseas Contingency Operations) are included in the baseline appropriations. This budget includes funds for combat operations, logistics, and mobility in line with evolving posture and troop level requirements while replenishing munitions used during operations. Funding sustains multiple locations outside Iraq and Afghanistan and funds Weapon System Sustainment and Flying Hour requirements. Additionally, this budget funds five European Deterrence Initiative MILCON projects.
The Space Force FY 2022 Operation and Maintenance (O&M) budget request of $3.4 billion includes funds for mission operations and sustainment of day-to-day operations, resources for the headquarters and field commands for doctrine development, warfare, intelligence, professional military education, and personnel.
The FY 2022 Space Force Research, Development, Test & Evaluation (RDT&E) budget of $11.3 billion invests to protect and defend current space assets, field more resilient and defensible architectures, protect the joint force from adversary use of space capabilities in conflict, and build a lean, agile, combat effective, digital service. This request increases funding for development of resilient missile warning and missile tracking, effective protect and defend architecture, command and control systems, protected satellite communications, and precision, navigation, and timing systems that are more survivable against adversary threats.
The Space Force Procurement budget of $2.8 billion funds acquisition of spacecraft and terminals, ground control systems, launch services, and related communications security and training products.