Finishing a week-long floor effort to advance legislation funding the military for Fiscal Year 2014, the U.S. House of Representatives today passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The annual bill also authorizes military programs and sets policy for the Department of Defense.
U.S. Representative Martha Roby (R-AL) serves on the House Armed Services Committee, which is responsible for crafting the NDAA each year. Rep. Roby said the bill will help the military avoid a hollowing out of its readiness and capability in light of sequestration budget cuts.
"This is a strong, bipartisan bill that properly funds our military," Rep. Roby said. "The House NDAA restores funding so that our planes can take flight, our ships can sail and our military can properly train our warfighters. I'm confident that this bill responsibly allows our military to respond to global threats, but does so within our nation's fiscal constraints.
"Providing for the common defense is one of the fundamental duties of the Congress spelled out in the Constitution. I'm proud to represent two distinguished military installations in Maxwell Air Force Base and Fort Rucker. During our work on this year's NDAA, I have been mindful of the important role these and other installations around the world play in ensuring the security of this great nation."
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Specific to her role as chairman of the House Armed Services Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations, Rep. Roby said she is pleased that provisions of the NDAA relating to Benghazi and Afghan women were included in the final House-passed version.
"It is important that the Department of Defense understands the lessons of Benghazi and organizes its forces to preclude or better respond to a similar attack. Also, as Afghan forces assume an increasingly large role in Afghanistan's defense, preserving the safety and security of Afghan women will be among our top priorities. The Subcommittee on Oversight and Investigations has been particularly interested in these two issues, and I'm pleased the NDAA includes provisions offering the appropriate policy guidance on both."
The House-passed NDAA authorizes $552.1 billion in military spending and an additional $85.8 billion for overseas contingency operations. Additional provisions of the House-passed NDAA would:
- restore Army and Air Force flying hour programs critical to training combat aviators;
- support current law calling for a 1.8% troop pay increase;
- stop fee increases for TRICARE, the military's health insurance program;
- combat sexual assault in the military by reforming the Uniform Code of Military Justice to strip commanders of the authority to dismiss a court martial's finding, and by establishing minimum sentencing guidelines.
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