Washington DC - Following yesterday's passage of the Fiscal Year 2010 Defense Authorization Act by the House Armed Services Committee, Congressman Duncan Hunter announced several initiatives included in the legislation that directly benefit San Diego County. These initiatives, which were either put forward or strongly supported by Congressman Hunter, will continue providing quality jobs for local defense and aerospace workers.
"The Defense Authorization Act serves as the annual funding and policy blueprint for the Department of Defense and its national security activities," said Congressman Hunter. "Our first priority is to ensure our service personnel have the resources they need and our military families are provided the quality of life they deserve. Overall, this legislation reflects our commitment to America's military and its mission.
"This bill also includes important initiatives that directly benefit defense and aerospace workers across the country, including many in San Diego. Even in today's tough economic environment, these jobs continue to provide sustainable employment for millions of Americans. This bill is strong on ship building and maintenance, an industry that's important to the San Diego region, and authorizes funding for many other initiatives that serve to strengthen our economy and national security.
"Specifically, the legislation includes $180 million for the NASSCO shipyard in San Diego. That funding will help sustain a greater portion of the NASSCO workforce of 4,700 by shortening possible production gaps between ship construction.
"At the same time, I'm concerned about the $1.2 billion cut to missile defense funding included in the legislation and the stern opposition by Committee Democrats to restoring this funding. The missile threat presented by hostile regimes in North Korea and Iran is far too serious to ignore. This threat requires we adequately fund our nation's missile defense systems and advance new technologies that strengthen this capability. I hope we can work to restore this funding as this legislation moves through the legislative process."
Several initiatives put forward or strongly supported by Congressman Hunter in the Fiscal Year 2010 Defense Authorization Act include:
- $180 million in advanced procurement funding for the Mobile Landing Platform at the NASSCO shipyard in San Diego;
- 3.4 % pay raise for members of the armed forces;
- $1.95 billion for programs to expand to the availability and improve the quality of military housing;
- $3 million for the Brownout Situational Awareness Sensor;
- $1 million for the HapMed Combat Medic Trainer;
- Over $20 billion for ship building and maintenance;
- $300 million for the Army and Marine Corps to meet unfunded requirements.
The Fiscal Year 2010 Defense Authorization Act is expected to be considered by the House as early as next week.