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Larson: 2019 Defense Authorization Conference Report Will Bolster CT’s Thriving Defense Manufacturing

July 26, 2018
Press Release

Washington, D.C. - Today, Congressman John B. Larson (CT-01) issued the following statement on House passage of the Conference Report to the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 (NDAA):

“Today’s adoption of the 2019 Defense Authorization Conference Report will continue the growth of Connecticut’s thriving defense manufacturing ecosystem while bolstering our military and national security. Work on our nation’s defense programs is supporting hundreds of suppliers and over $1.7 billion in economic activity for the Connecticut economy. As co-chair of the F-35 Caucus, I am proud to have fought to ensure this bill includes flexibility for the DoD to purchase additional fighter jets that support more than 4,600 jobs and $545 million in economic activity in the First District alone. This bill is a win for the Connecticut economy and the men and women who protect our country.” said Larson.

“This year’s Defense Authorization was aptly named after Senator McCain; an American hero who has dutifully served our country as an airman, a POW, and a statesman. Among many other things, the Conference Report provides a pay increase for our troops, establishes a prescription monitoring program to shield our military from opioid abuse, and makes key investments to counter aggression and interference by our foreign adversaries. I thank Congressman Joe Courtney for his guidance and hard work on the Armed Services Committee where he continues to safeguard Connecticut’s priorities, and for his leadership in fighting for our submarine programs that provide countless jobs to Connecticut residents.”

The Conference Report to the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019 (NDAA) encompasses the following provisions:

  • Raises military pay by 2.6%
  • Requires the Department of Defense to establish a prescription drug monitoring program and share information with state prescription drug monitoring programs in order prevent opioid abuse within the military
  • Requires the National Security Council to report its strategy for countering malign foreign influence in our democracy
  • Funds the Global Engagement Center programs to counter propaganda and disinformation efforts by our foreign adversaries
  • Requires US-based foreign media outlets to disclose their sources of funding to the FCC
  • Helps our European allies strengthen deterrence against Russian aggression

Highlights of Connecticut's defense manufacturing priorities:

•$10.6 billion to purchase 77 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters; includes additional $92 million for spare parts; and provides flexibility for the Department to procure additional fighters if additional program cost savings are achieved.

•$2.3 billion for advance procurement of B-21 Long Range Strike Bomber

•$7.6 billion for Virginia-class submarine procurement and advance procurement.

•$2.3 billion for 15 KC-46A Tankers

•$3.2 billion for advanced procurement of Ohio Replacement Program

•$1.2 billion for 54 UH-60 Blackhawks

•$1.1 billion for purchase 8 CH-53K Heavy Lift Helicopters

•$1.1 billion for advance procurement of 10 Combat Search and Rescue Helicopters

•$649 million for procurement and development of VH-92A Presidential Helicopter as well as $24 million for upgrades to the existing fleet

•$151 million for C-130H Modernization, including $55 million for eight blade propeller upgrades and $74 million for the engine enhancement program

Last April, Larson led an funding request for the F-35 program and, in May, he released a statement on the initial passage of the 2019 Defense Authorization in the House of Representatives.