Brown Secures Key Priorities for Lima’s Joint Systems Manufacturing Center in Senate Defense Bill

WASHINGTON, D.C. – U.S. Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) announced that the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which was approved by the Senate Armed Services Committee last week, will include authorizations for projects that will sustain and support the workforce at Lima’s Joint Systems Manufacturing Center (JSMC). Sen. Brown requested that the Committee support these critical programs.

“Continued investment in the Abrams Tank and the Stryker Vehicle is critical to our Ohio jobs and our national security,” said Brown. “I will urge my colleagues on the Appropriations Committee to make this equipment a priority.” 

The funding authorized in the Senate bill will support the following projects:

  • Abrams Tank Upgrades ($561 million): Brown requested – in line with the Army’s needs – continued funding to upgrade the Abrams Tank. Upgrades include expanded firepower and enhanced protections against threats like improvised explosive devices. This additional funding will ensure that Abrams Tanks are able to combat all enemies on the battlefield while protecting American soldiers.
  • Fourth Double-V Hull Stryker Brigade ($348 million): In 2010, the Army started upgrading its Lima-built Stryker vehicles in order to better withstand improvised explosive devices and protect American soldiers. The new design is known as the Double-V Hull, and the Army has been gradually upgrading all Stryker Brigade Combat Teams with the new design. Brown requested the Senate Armed Services Committee authorize funding for more than 100 new Stryker Double-V Hull vehicles because the new design better protects American soldiers and supports domestic manufacturing. The NDAA contains funding for 116 vehicles. The President’s budget had proposed zeroing out this upgrade program.
  • Stryker Brigade Combat Team Lethality Upgrade ($348 million): In 2015, the Army requested funding to upgrade the weaponry on its Stryker vehicles so as to remain competitive on the battlefield and ensure that there was no match for American firepower. Funding for these upgrades supports Ohio jobs and ensures that our soldiers are equipped for every level of engagement. Brown requested and the NDAA provided the funding necessary to retrofit 81 Stryker vehicles with 30MM cannons.

In March, Brown met with U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis to highlight the importance of continued funding for the Abrams Tank and the Stryker Vehicle. Critical work is done on both systems at the JSMC.

In May 2017, Brown wrote to his Senate Armed Services and Appropriations Committee colleagues to support inclusion of the Abrams Tank and Stryker Vehicle in the NDAA and the Defense Appropriations bill.

In October 2016, Brown and U.S. Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) brought Under Secretary of the Army Patrick J. Murphy to Lima for a tour of the Joint Systems Manufacturing Center (JSMC). Brown and Portman have been longtime champions of the JSMC and have worked over the years with the Senate Armed Services Committee, the Senate Appropriations Committee, and U.S. Department of Defense (DOD) leadership to promote the work done in Lima.

In February 2016, Brown applauded the inclusion of funding for the Abrams Tank and the Stryker Vehicle in President Obama’s Fiscal Year 2017 budget proposal. Brown wrote to U.S. Secretary of the Army John McHugh in August 2015 to request these funds.