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Larson: NDAA is Vital For CT Jobs

September 24, 2021
Press Release

Washington, D.C. - Today, Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01) voted for the FY2022 National Defense Authorization Act

“During the pandemic, in the worst downturn of the commercial aircraft industry in years, not a single member of the machinists union working on the F-35 in Connecticut was laid off. They all maintained their jobs because of the long-term work manufacturing the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter for the U.S. military. This year’s National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) supports thousands of workers, jobs, and small businesses as we continue to combat the COVID-19 pandemic. The F-35 program alone supports over 6,000 jobs, 41 suppliers, and has an economic impact of more than $750 million in Connecticut’s First District. The FY2022 NDAA continues to make a significant investment in Connecticut jobs and our national security by supporting an additional 80 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters and four spare F-35B engines, $12.6 billion for Virginia-class and Ohio-class replacement submarines, and $1.2 billion for Sikorsky helicopters.  

“The bill also makes a significant investment in protecting our nation’s cybersecurity by allocating  nearly $1 billion. I will continue to support and advocate for policies that keep troops out of harms’ way and prevent fighting in unnecessary wars on foreign soil. By investing in these national security measures, we are ensuring our military remains well-equipped and deters foreign adversaries from acting. 

“This year’s NDAA takes significant steps to address sexual assault and harassment in the military. It also affirms Congressional oversight of the use of military force by requiring the President to submit a report to Congress within 48 hours after an incident in which the U.S. military is involved in hostilities. Additionally, the NDAA establishes a $15 minimum wage for covered Department of Defense (DoD) service and construction contracts and contains $500 million in DoD relocation support for Afghan Special Immigrant Visa holders who have helped our military over the years. 

“The NDAA also takes steps to address PFAS contaminations like what happened in Windsor several years ago. It requires the DoD to use state standards for PFAS cleanup if those state standards are stricter than federal regulations, prohibits DoD from procuring PFAS containing items, and requires DoD to make publicly available drinking and ground water testing results for PFAS conducted on or near military installations, formerly used defense sites, and National Guard sites,” said Larson.

“The F-35 program is not just critical for our country’s safety and security, but it is vital to our aerospace supply chain. At a time when passenger air travel has been hurt by the pandemic, the trickle-down effect from vital defense programs is essential. HORST Engineering and other small suppliers are depending on F-35 and other programs to sustain us as the aerospace manufacturing industry looks to rebound in the coming years,” said Scott Livingston, President and CEO HORST Engineering. 

During COVID-19, passenger airline miles plummeted. The work our members at Pratt & Whitney do on the F-135 engines for the joint strike fighter helped keep anyone from being laid off. The Machinists in CT are appreciative of Congressman Larson’s efforts to assure the F-35 takes the lead in our nation’s air superiority. Our members in Connecticut provide the power for this phenomenal aircraft. Orders like this help provide good paying union jobs at both the aircraft manufacturer and our members at Pratt & Whitney,” said Mike Stone, District 26 Directing Business Representative, IAM. 

Connecticut Priorities Included in the FY2022 NDAA: 

  • $11.6 billion for 80 F-35’s 
  • $2.9 billion for the B-21 Raider Long Range Strike Bomber Program 
  • $1.6 for 9 CH-53K Heavy Lift Helicopters 
  • $5 billion for the Ohio-class Replacement Submarine Program (Columbia-class) 
  • $1.4 billion for 6 E-2D ADV Hawkeyes 
  • $2.3 billion for 14 KC-46A Tankers 
  • $7.6 billion for 2 Virginia-class submarines 
  • $1.1 billion for 57 UH-60 Blackhawks 
  • $91 million for VH-92 Presidential Helicopters