President Trump to Sign NDAA’s Ohio Wins into Law

Later today, President Trump will sign the National Defense Authorization Act into law, which includes several key Ohio victories that Senator Brown fought to include in the bill. As a conferee on the committee that worked to reconcile the differences between the House and Senate versions, Brown was in a unique position to fight for Ohio’s defense priorities.

From Senator Brown: “I had two goals on this conference committee – to fight for Ohio jobs, and to protect our national security. I’ve seen firsthand the critical work performed at Ohio’s military installations like Lima’s JSMC, the Wright Patterson Air Force Base, Camp Ravenna, and more, and I will always work to make sure Ohio and its workforce have the resources needed to continue their important work of defending national security and keeping Americans safe.”

The bipartisan compromise includes the following Ohio priorities:

  • Brown’s bill to ensure the Committee on Foreign Investment in the United States – known as CFIUS – is better equipped to handle emerging threats from China
    • All Senate conferees were members of the Armed Services Committee with the exception of Senators Brown and Mike Crapo (R-ID), who serve as Ranking Member and Chairman, respectively, of the U.S. Senate Banking, Housing and Urban Affairs Committee.
      • In June, Brown took to the Senate floor to call for the passage of this bill. Brown also thanked Senators Crapo (R-ID), John Cornyn (R-TX), and Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) for their work in passing this bill.
      • In May, the Banking, Housing, and Urban Affairs Committee passed a CFIUS reform bill led by Brown and Crapo. It was added as an amendment to the Senate National Defense Authorization Act in the Senate Armed Services Committee, and passed the full Senate in June.  
      • In the same way CFIUS protects national security, Brown and Sen. Chuck Grassley (R-IA) have also introduced legislation to protect American jobs and the economy from foreign investments. Last year, Brown and Grassley introduced the Foreign Investment Review Act, which would require review of certain proposed foreign investments for their impact on the U.S. economy and jobs. The Senators’ bill would require a review of certain foreign investments to determine if they are in the economic interest of the U.S.
  • The largest military construction investment ever made in Wright-Patt’s National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC), and provisions to keep critical research jobs at Wright-Patt. This includes:
    • Providing more funding for military construction at Wright-Patt’s National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC) than ever before
      • The NDAA will fully authorize $182 million for phase one and two of NASIC’s expansion. The project will receive an appropriation authorization of $61 million for Fiscal Year 2019 to begin construction.
        • In June, Brown fought to ensure the Senate’s version of the NDAA included funding for military construction to expand NASIC.
        • Earlier this year, Brown wrote to Secretary Mattis calling for an investment at NASIC, along with other Ohio priorities. And in October 2017, Brown spoke to Air Force Secretary Heather Wilson about investing in construction needs at the base.
        • Prior to that, in March 2017, Brown – as co-chair of the Senate Air Force Caucus – brought his Republican caucus co-chair John Boozman (R-AR), Armed Services Committee Members Jack Reed (D-RI), Sen. Mazie Hirono (D-HI) and Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) to visit Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and tour the facility. Together, Brown and Portman highlighted critical research and development work done at the base in support of the Air Force and national security.
        • Brown also met with Sec. Mattis in March of 2017 to outline Ohio military priorities. During the meeting, Brown invited Mattis to visit Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and the Air National Guard 178th Wing in Springfield.
    • Keeping Defense Production Act (DPA) jobs at Wright-Patt
      • The Manufacturing Technology Division of Wright-Patterson’s Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) helps run a key defense manufacturing program that allows the federal government to support defense-related manufacturing when domestic capabilities aren’t able to meet national security needs. The program was created under the Defense Production Act (DPA), and supports Ohio jobs and brings investments to the region through contracts awarded to the program.
      • Last summer, the Department of Defense (DOD) announced plans to shift DPA Title III management from the Air Force to the Pentagon – which would have moved some of these DPA jobs away from Wright-Patt. Brown wrote to DOD immediately, urging it to keep DPA program managers housed at Wright-Patt.
      • Brown then secured language in the Senate’s NDAA bill that bars DOD from moving program management of DPA without Congressional approval and keeps the jobs in Ohio. 
    • Authorizing more than $1 billion worth of research and development programs for Air Force Research Lab (AFRL) Directorates at Wright-Patt
    • Protecting Dayton’s Water from Toxic Chemicals known as PFAS
      • The bill includes $335.8 million for Air Force bases like Wright-Patt to continue efforts to clean up toxic chemicals, such as Per-and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances (PFAS) – and keep them from getting into the local water supply.
  • $8 million in funding for Rickenbacker Air National Guard Base
    • This funding will be used to construct a small arms range at Rickenbacker Air National Guard Base in Columbus.
      • Brown has been a strong advocate for Rickenbacker in Columbus.
      • In 2016, Brown and Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH) helped secure a decision by the U.S. Air Force to bring a KC-135 air refueling tanker flight simulator to Rickenbacker Air National Guard Base in Columbus. The entire Ohio delegation – both senators and all 15 House members – sent a bipartisan letter on behalf of the Ohio Air National Guard urging General Carlton Everhart of the Air Mobility Command to locate a KC-135 air refueling tanker flight simulator at Rickenbacker.
      • In 2013, Brown pressed then-Secretary of the Air Force Deborah Lee James on the importance of expanding the mission at Rickenbacker. Brown also sent a letter to General Dennis McCarthy, then-chair of the National Commission on the Structure of the Air Force encouraging the commission to use Ohio as a model for the rest of nation.

 

  • $13 million in funding for the Mansfield Lahm Air National Guard Base
    • This funding will be used to replace the fire station at Mansfield Lahm Air National Guard Base in Mansfield.
      • Brown has been working to secure funding for Mansfield Lahm ANGB. Last year, in meetings with U.S. Secretary of Defense Jim Mattis and Air Force Secretary Dr. Heather Wilson, Brown pressed for upgrades to the C-130H planes flown at Mansfield Lahm ANGB.
      • In June 2015, Brown co-sponsored an amendment offered by Sen. Jon Tester (D-MT) that would support jobs at Mansfield Lahm ANGB by calling on the Air Force to coordinate with the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA) to meet safety and compliance regulations by the 2020 deadline.

 

  • $7.4 million for Camp Ravenna
    • This funding will be used to construct an automated multipurpose machine gun range at Camp Ravenna’s Joint Military Training Center.
      • In March, Brown joined Sen. Rob Portman (D-OH) and the Ohio Delegation in urging Secretary of Defense James Mattis to select Camp Ravenna as the East Coast Missile Defense site. And in February, at Brown’s urging, the President included the $7.4 million investment for Camp Ravenna in his budget proposal.
      • In 2015, Brown helped secure funding for improvements to the Camp’s indoor firing range facility in the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and the Fiscal Year (FY) 2016 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies Appropriations Act. The funds improved the existing training for both overseas contingency operations as well as routine preparedness.
      • In 2014, Brown announced $5.2 million in federal funds for the Camp to extend the Ravenna water/sewer line. This infrastructure and utility funding is crucial to the growth of Camp Ravenna, which the Ohio National Guard continues to expand and develop as a major training site. Brown has been working for years to secure funding for Lima’s JSMC. In February, Brown announced that funding for Lima’s JSMC was included in President Trump’s budget proposal, and said he would continue fighting to bring Lima the resources it needs.
  • $2.8 billion for Lima’s Joint Systems Manufacturing Center (JSMC)
    • This funding will be used for two programs at JSMC. Specifically, $363.4 million will be used to continue Stryker vehicle upgrades and modifications, and more than $2.4 billion will be used for upgrades and modifications to the Abrams Tank.
      • Brown helped lay the groundwork in December 2017 for JSMC funding in the National Defense Authorization Act that was signed into law last year.
      • In March 2017, 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. 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 both 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 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.
  • Brown’s bipartisan bill with Senator Rounds (R-SD), the Better Access to Technical Training, Learning, and Entrepreneurship for Servicemembers Act (BATTLE) for Servicemembers Act, which will better connect servicemembers with resources to secure quality education and good-paying jobs as they transition from military service to civilian life
    • Brown and Rounds introduced the bill in April of this year. Their legislation would increase participation in programs that help servicemembers transition to civilian life.
    • Specifically, servicemembers will be able to choose a two day training session on either higher education, technical training, or entrepreneurship. Instead of continuing with an opt-in option, the initial bill would make the training opt-out to encourage greater participation by servicemembers.
    • According to a 2017 GAO report, only 14 percent of servicemembers completed at least one additional two-day training program after completing the three day required portion of the Transition Assistance Program (TAP).
    • Currently, TAP training covers a curriculum that includes sessions on veterans’ benefits, financial planning, and post-service employment. The BATTLE for Servicemembers Act will now supplement the current training and better tailor the sessions to fit the needs of servicemembers.

 

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