About the Commission
BRAC is the commonly used acronym for the formal name of the Defense Base Closure and Realignment Commission. The 2005 BRAC Commission is an independent entity that submits its findings and recommendations to the President of the United States on or before September 8, 2005.
The 2005 BRAC Commission is authorized by Congress through the Defense Base Closure and Realignment Act of 1990 (P.L. 101-510), as amended. (Click here for the statute).
There are nine commissioners who have been appointed to serve on the BRAC Commission by President Bush.
The BRAC Commission was created to provide an objective, thorough, accurate, and non-partisan review and analysis, through a process determined by law, of the list of bases and military installations which the Department of Defense (DoD) has recommended be closed and/or realigned. The DoD list of recommendations was formally presented to the BRAC Commission on May 13th, 2005.
The Commission is required to assess each recommendation to ensure it meets the eight selection criteria set forth by Congress in P.L. 108-375. Recommendations by DoD that substantially deviate from these selection criteria can be modified or rejected by the Commission by a simple majority vote of the Commissioners.
The Commission can also add installations to the closure or realignment list recommended to the President, but only through a process in which seven of nine Commissioners vote to do so, the Secretary of Defense is properly notified in writing 15 days prior to the proposed change, and only after at least two Commissioners physically visit the military installation in question.
To avoid any appearance of a lack of impartiality and to enhance the public's confidence in the integrity of the BRAC process four commissioners have recused themselves from participation in matters relating to installations in their home states. Commissioners Coyle and Gehman recused themselves because of their participation in BRAC-related activity in California and Virginia respectively. Commissioners Bilbray and Hansen recused themselves because of their long-time representation in the Congress and other public offices of Nevada and Utah respectively. As a result of their recusals, the commissioners cannot deliberate or vote on matters relating to installations in their home states or to installations in others states that are substantially affected by closures and realignments of installations in their home states.
The BRAC Commission will seek extensive public input through a series of regional hearings, installation site visits by Commissioners and staff, and individual meetings. The Commissioners are deeply mindful of the human impact of the DoD installation recommendations, and have pledged to ensure that a full review of the facts, and consideration of community and related interests will be made prior to making their final recommendations to President Bush.