On July 24th, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 2397, the Department of Defense Appropriations Act for Fiscal Year 2014. Included in this legislation was Congressman Runyan's amendment which requires that the Department of Defense (DoD) use American-owned and operated aircraft whenever possible to move cargo and passengers.
Recently, the DoD has been using foreign-owned aircraft to carry equipment in and out of Afghanistan. According to the Government Accountability Office, in FY12 alone, the DoD paid foreign aircraft carriers $274 million in U.S. taxpayer dollars.
"Using foreign-owned aircraft is not only disadvantageous for U.S. military carriers, but also for U.S. commercial airlines that have dedicated aircraft to the Civil Reserve Fleet (CRAF) program," said Congressman Runyan. "It removes the incentive for American carriers to hire American workers and use American mechanics and suppliers, and ultimately harms a vital national security program. I am pleased that the House has voted to include this common sense, fiscally-responsible bipartisan amendment in the legislation."
Under the CRAF program, which was established in 1952, U.S. airlines commit to support DoD airlift needs when those needs exceed the military's own airlift capability.