Today, Congressman Ken Calvert (CA-42) voted along with a bipartisan majority (371-48) of his House colleagues to pass the Fiscal Year 2017 Defense Appropriations bill. Rep. Calvert serves as the Vice Chairman of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee.
“The Defense Appropriations bill passed by the House today is an important first step to rebuild and restore our military strength,” said Rep. Calvert. “The bill provides vital funding for our Armed Services, including a 2.1% pay raise and additional funding for increased end strength. I look forward to working with the new Administration and providing the resources our military needs to maintain our position in the world as well as continue to invest in our most important asset – the men and women our United States Armed Forces.”
Bill Highlights (Provided by the House Appropriations Committee):
Military Personnel and Pay – The agreement includes $132.1 billion – $128.7 billion for base requirements and $3.4 billion for OCO/GWOT requirements – to provide for 1,305,900 active-duty troops and 813,200 Guard and Reserve troops. The agreement denies the troop reductions proposed in the previous Administration’s fiscal year 2017 budget request. The agreement also fully funds the authorized 2.1 percent pay raise for the military, instead of 1.6 percent as requested by the previous Administration.
Defense Health and Military Family Programs – The agreement contains $34.1 billion for base and GWOT requirements – $1.5 billion above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level and $314 million above the previous Administration’s request – for the Defense Health Program to provide care for our troops, military families, and retirees. The agreement provides $312 million for cancer research, $125 million for traumatic brain injury and psychological health research, and $296 million for sexual assault prevention and response. All of these funding levels represent increases above the budget request for these programs.
Force Structure – The agreement rejects the Obama Administration’s proposed troop reductions. Instead, the agreement provides increases above fiscal year 2016, including funds for an additional 1,000 active-duty Army soldiers, 1,000 Army National Guard soldiers, 1,000 Army Reserve soldiers, and 1,000 active-duty Marines.
Savings and Reductions to President Obama’s Request – The agreement reflects commonsense decisions to save taxpayer dollars where possible in areas that will not affect the safety or success of our troops and missions. Some of these savings include: $1.155 billion from lower-than-expected fuel costs; $157 million due to favorable economic conditions; and $4.76 billion in savings from rescissions of unused prior-year funding.