The 2005 round of base realignment and closures has cost over 50 percent more than its original estimate of $21 billion, and DoD will not recoup its upfront costs until 2018, GAO has said.

The White House is requesting two more rounds in its 2013 budget submission and members of Congress are beginning to dig in to defend bases and other DoD assets in their states and districts. Not all are opposed to further consolidations and closings as a way to bring down defense spending, but those in favor will have to work hard to defend savings estimates in the face of the ballooning costs of the 2005 round.

Costs increased mostly due to military construction as DoD identified the need for new and renovated facilities to enhance capabilities, according to GAO-12-513T.

It said that in 2005 the BRAC commission estimated net annual recurring savings of $4.2 billion and a 20-year net present value savings by 2025 of $36 billion.

Annual recurring savings are now about $3.8 billion, a decrease of 9.5 percent, while the 20-year net present value savings are now about $9.9 billion, a decrease of 73 percent, GAO said.