Congressman Tim Griffin (AR-02) issued the following statement after House passage of the FY 2014 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA -- H.R. 1960):
"The NDAA provides essential funding for our nation's military without endangering our country's economic security. It provides a pay increase for our troops, combats sexual assault in the military and addresses the growing threats posed by cyber attacks. It also includes language that would award the Purple Heart to Pvt. Quinton Ezeagwula and Pvt. William Long, the victims of the Little Rock Recruiting Station shooting, and it requires the Air Force to continue the modernization of our C-130 legacy aircraft through the Avionics Modernization Program (AMP). I was proud to vote for this bipartisan bill that supports our troops and their families."
H.R. 1960 authorizes $552.1 billion for FY 2014 defense programs and activities. The bill also authorizes an additional $85.8 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations, which represents $2.7 billion less from the previous year. The bill is consistent with the House-passed budget (H.Con. Res. 25). It authorizes an annual pay increase of 1.8 percent
Section 585 of the bill requires the Secretary of the military department concerned to award the Purple Heart to members of the Armed Forces who were killed or wounded in the attacks that occurred at the recruiting station in Little Rock on June 1, 2009, and at Fort Hood, Texas, on November 5, 2009. Furthermore, this section deems the members of the Armed Forces killed or wounded in those attacks to have been killed or injured in a combat zone and the Department of Defense civilians to have been killed or wounded in a contingency operation. This would make those members and civilians eligible for additional monetary benefits.
Section 132 of the bill prohibits the Secretary of the Air Force from terminating the C-130 AMP and authorizes $47.3 million, for continued procurement of eight C--130 AMP kits and installation onto C--130H aircraft.