Defense funding bill approved by appropriations
The House Appropriations Committee today approved the Fiscal Year 2018 Defense Appropriations bill, legislation that funds the Department of Defense and its operations.
Roby, who serves on the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, said today’s action was an important step toward ensuring the military is fully funded in 2018.
“The men and women of our Armed Forces must be equipped with everything they need when we send them into harm’s way,” Roby said. “I have been a vocal advocate for restoring proper military funding throughout my time in Congress. This bill is an important first step toward reversing the reduction of readiness and strength that has taken place in recent years.”
The legislation provides $658.1 billion in total for the Department of Defense, including:
- $584.2 billion in discretionary funding - $68.1 billion above the FY 2017 level and $18.4 billion above the President’s request;
- $73.9 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO)/Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) funding.
The bill contains important funding increases over the Administration’s budget request for Army Aviation programs, including:
- $58 million for 7 additional Lakota helicopters;
- $108 million for 8 additional Blackhawk helicopters;
- $136.4 million for 4 additional Chinook helicopters.
The bill also provides support for other key programs, including:
- An additional $930.8 million to fund a total of 3 Littoral Combat Ships;
- $348 million for upgrades to the Stryker vehicle;
- Strong funding for missile programs, including THAAD, Hellfire, and LRASM;
- $8.2 billion for 74 F-35 aircraft.
Furthermore, the bill includes language authored by Roby directing the Secretary of the Navy to submit a report to Congress outlining its procurement strategy for the Seahawk helicopter to align with the Navy’s plans to grow its fleet. This report will be due within 90 days.
Full text of the bill can be found here.