Congressman Ander Crenshaw, member of the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, today (5/24) lauded House Appropriations Committee passage of the Fiscal Year 2012 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Bill. The measure, which Crenshaw voted for in committee on Tuesday, includes funds to continue preparing Naval Station Mayport to homeport a nuclear aircraft carrier.
The legislation contains $14.98 million for transportation infrastructure improvements for homeporting a carrier at the base. The bill will also fund as necessary the planning and design of future homeporting projects such as the maintenance wharf and controlled industrial facility.
"Mayport wins today as it always has before," said Crenshaw. "Military and defense personnel at the highest levels say the East Coast needs two nuclear aircraft carrier homeports -- one of them in Jacksonville. I'm proud to have cast a vote in support of national security and will fight on until the day a carrier sails in to homeport on the First Coast."
On May 11th, the House Armed Services Committee passed H.R. 1540, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012 which stripped the Mayport projects. Following Tuesday's House Appropriations Committee approval of the Mayport funding, Crenshaw said he fully expects the Senate Appropriations Committee and the Senate Armed Services Committee to fund the projects as the Navy and the President have requested.
The House and Senate Armed Committee and the House and Senate Appropriations Committee have already approved over $77 million in funds for projects needed to make Naval Station Mayport a nuclear homeport in the Fiscal Year 2010 and Fiscal Year 2011 appropriations and authorization defense bills.
The Fiscal Year 2012 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations Bill also contains funding for the following projects at Naval Air Station Jacksonville:
* Operator Center for the BAMS (Broad Area Maritime Surveillance) Unmanned Aerial System - $4.48 million.
* Hanger Upgrades to accommodate the new P-8A aircraft - $6.08 million.
* Training Facility for new P-8A aircraft - $25.98 million.