Aug 01 2018

South Carolina Priorities In Defense Authorization Bill To Become Law

WASHINGTON –U.S. Senator Lindsey Graham (R-South Carolina) today voted in favor of the final version of the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 (FY19 NDAA), which included several priorities for South Carolina and the rest of the nation.  The bill will now head to President Trump’s desk to be signed into law.

“The fact that this bill includes $716 billion in funding for our national defense is a testament to Chairman McCain’s commitment to serving the American people and protecting the homeland.  John McCain is synonymous with reforming the Pentagon and supporting the American troops.  The legislation we just passed makes important improvements in both of these values long championed by Chairman McCain,” said Graham.  “I truly appreciate his leadership, as well as Senator Jim Inhofe, Ranking Member Jack Reed, members of the conference committee and all of their capable staff for getting this important legislation swiftly approved by the committee and the full Senate.”

“As a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, I understand that the first and most important dollars our nation spends each year are for our national security,” said Graham.  “We must ensure our men and women have the best tools, training and equipment to carry out their vital mission to protect our nation.”

“Finally, South Carolina has long played an important role in the protection of our nation,” continued Graham.  “I’m proud to have worked on these priorities for our national defense and our state.  It’s important South Carolina remain the tip of the spear when it comes to meeting the needs of the military and our men and women in uniform.”

Highlights of Graham provisions included in the final version of the FY19 NDAA:

Authorizes five South Carolina Military Construction projects.

  • A new MQ-9 Reaper Operations facility at Shaw Air Force Base
  • A basic training barracks complex at Fort Jackson to support 1,200 trainees
  • Improvements and modernization to training ranges at Marine Corps Recruit Depot Parris Island
  • A cryogenics facility and a new hazardous waste/recycling facility at Marine Corps Air Station (MCAS) Beaufort

Advocates for South Carolina.

  • Includes $220 million to continue construction at the MOX Facility at Savannah River Site
  • Fully authorizes continued production rate of Meals Ready-to-Eat (MREs) – hundreds of thousands are manufactured in South Carolina – vital for our troops serving in combat  
  • Encourages the efficient and economical operation of Working Capital Fund activities like SPAWAR, Charleston
  • Fully authorizes the President’s Request for the T-X program in South Carolina’s Upstate – a key aspect of the Air Force’s mission to develop a new training jet – which could add hundreds of jobs to the Palmetto State
  • Authorizes $529 million to procure a critical type of field artillery, Paladin Integrated Management set, supported by BAE Systems in Aiken
  • Includes an additional $5 million for procuring the M240 medium machine gun, supported by FN in Columbia
  • Adds six AH-64E Apaches for the National Guard to begin addressing critical attack helicopter shortfalls

Gives Troops a Much-Deserved Pay Raise.

  • Authorizes a 2.6 percent pay raise for members of the Armed Forces