WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator John Boozman (R-AR) will vote to support the Fiscal Year 2021 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that includes defense priorities he championed to improve military readiness, expand services for military families and invest in Arkansas’s role in our national defense.
“Congress has a responsibility to bolster our national security and ensure the men and women in uniform have the resources, tools and training necessary to help them carry out their missions. The NDAA makes critical investments to defend our country against evolving threats posed by adversaries like China while supporting our troops with a three percent pay raise and improving the housing and child care needs of military families. While the bill may not be perfect, it will modernize our military and ensure service members have the capabilities to defend our interests,” Boozman said.
Arkansas-related provisions championed by Boozman are highlighted below:
- Authorizes a new Arkansas National Guard Readiness Training Center at Fort Chaffee. Boozman secured funding to construct the center which will provide greater support for training exercises and help ensure Arkansas guardsmen continue to be some of the best.
- Increases funding for the 188th Wing renewable energy project.
- Maintains the Air Force’s C-130 fleet which will strengthen the Little Rock Air Force Base mission.
- Improves child care assistance for military families who are assigned to around-the-clock, stateside rotations units—like the 188th Wing in Fort Smith. The provision directs the Department of Defense to research, report and provide recommendations to Congress on how to provide 24-hour child care to military families.
- Authorizes funding supporting the deployment of the Iron Dome short-range protection system to the U.S. Army. Earlier this year, Boozman encouraged the Army to incorporate the protection system into the force and called on then-Secretary of Defense Mark Esper to deploy capabilities to safeguard U.S. and coalition members in the Middle East. A portion of the Iron Dome defense system is produced in Camden, Arkansas.
Boozman also successfully led the effort to secure funds for the military newspaper Stars and Stripes to continue after the Department of Defense planned to eliminate the media outlet.
Original article source: https://www.boozman.senate.gov/public/index.cfm/2020/12/boozman-ndaa-makes-critical-investments-to-defend-our-country-against-evolving-threats | Article may or may not reflect the views of KLEK 102.5 FM or The Voice of Arkansas Minority Advocacy Council