The House Armed Services Committee today passed H.R. 1735, the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for 2016 by a vote of 60-2.
The committee deliberated throughout the evening Wednesday and cast its vote this morning at approximately 4:30 AM EDT. Rep. Rob Bishop (UT-01), a senior Member of the Committee, voted in favor of the annual defense bill and said the following afterward:
“I am proud of my colleagues in the Armed Services Committee for passing this bill. The task of providing for the common defense is one of paramount importance. It is important that we pass the NDAA each year as it allows the armed services to provide security for our nation. I am happy to have language included in the bill that will protect the Utah Test and Training Range, Dugway Proving Ground, the Tooele Army Depot, and other lands used for military training, from intrusion by the Obama Administration through the dubious use of the Endangered Species Act.”
Rep. Bishop also included language in the bill that provides protections for Utah’s Depot Workers.
“Hill workers unfortunately remember when they were illegally furloughed by the Obama Administration.” Rep. Bishop said. “ I offered language to help ensure that their jobs are not threatened again by the Administration. This will ensure that any future worker reductions are based on workload and not any other factors so workers can continue to do what they do best in supporting the warfighter without worry of being targeted for illegal furloughs or job cuts.”
The legislation also authorizes full funding for the F-35 Joint Strike Fighter. Hill AFB has previously been identified as the OPS 1 location for the new fighter jet starting in September of this year.
“The F-35 is critical to our national defense and Hill is critical to the F-35. I’m proud of the role Hill is playing with this next generation of fighter and I’m grateful our defense bill fully funds this important program.”