Washington, DC – Today, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-NY-21), Member of the House Armed Services Committee, helped the House pass the final conference report to the FY17 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) that will pass both Chambers of Congress and be sent to the President. On top of the baseline defense budget, the NDAA also authorizes funding for operations in Iraq, Afghanistan and Europe, as well as Readiness Stabilization in order to prevent a readiness crisis. The FY17 NDAA provides a full 2.1 percent pay raise for our troops and prevents any increase to out-of-pocket healthcare costs for our current force or retirees. Additionally, the FY17 NDAA does not include any harmful changes to basic housing allowance, including for dual military families. For the second year in a row, Congresswoman Stefanik was selected to serve as a conferee on the bipartisan, bicameral NDAA Conference Committee.
“I am proud of the bipartisan work done by my colleagues in both Chambers of Congress on this critical legislation,” said Congresswoman Stefanik. “Our most important job in Congress is to provide for our national defense, and this year’s NDAA takes important steps to strengthen our defense capabilities and give our brave men and women in uniform the resources they need to keep us safe. I am proud that the FY17 NDAA included initiatives that my office fought for to strengthen military readiness and Fort Drum, as well as giving our men and women in uniform a deserved pay raise.”
Stefanik Fights Back Against Troop Reductions
Congresswoman Stefanik is a proud original cosponsor of the POSTURE Act, which ends the misguided draw down of troops and was included in this bill.
“As the Vice-Chair for the Subcommittee on Readiness, I am committed to ensuring we have a land forces end-strength to face the world’s challenges and protect our nation,” said Stefanik. “The language included in this legislation ensures the active duty Army does not fall below 480,000 personnel and will not be depleted as a result of this Administration’s flawed assumptions about the current security environment.”
Stefanik Provision Will Increase Military Readiness
Congresswoman Stefanik successfully added a provision that will positively impact military readiness at installations like Ft. Drum by allowing for the procurement of equipment to expand the use of airspace around military installations.
“I was proud to secure this important provision that will help installations like Wheeler-Sack Army Airfield – a state of the art airfield that facilitates the use of multiple aircraft,” added Stefanik.
Stefanik Secures Next-Generation Multispectral Improved Camouflage Systems
Congresswoman Stefanik successfully fought for a provision in the NDAA that significantly impacts military readiness by allowing for the Army to procure new next-generation multispectral improved camouflage systems.
“These next-generation camouflage systems will help units like the 10th Mountain Division that train in cold and inclement weather,” said Stefanik. “We must equip our brave men and women who serve in harm’s way with the equipment to combat a wide spectrum of emerging foreign threats.”
Stefanik Leads Fight Against 21st Century Threats
Congresswoman Stefanik was able to include language into the NDAA that requires the Department of Defense to develop a strategy to combat the radicalization and recruitment of violent extremists online through social media and to develop a social media analytical capability.
“The threats our nation faces on the 21st century battlefield continue to evolve and our nation’s defense capabilities must evolve too,” added Stefanik. “I am proud to lead the effort to combat the radicalization and recruitment of violent extremists online and thank my colleagues for their support for this critical provision.”
Stefanik’s U.S./Israeli Security Cooperation Initiative Included
Congresswoman Stefanik’s bipartisan legislation that would provide for the sharing of research and development costs between the United States and Israel to develop directed energy capabilities to detect and defeat ballistic missiles was added to the NDAA.
“We live in an increasingly dangerous and unstable world and it is critical that we do all we can to protect our nation and our interests,” said Stefanik. “Israel is our greatest ally in the Middle East, and through greater cooperation we can more effectively combat threats facing our two nations. I am pleased that this important initiative was included in the NDAA that we passed out of the House.”
For a detailed summary of the NDAA conference report, click here.