Washington, DC-- The House Armed Services Committee passed the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2004 (H.R. 1588)May 14. U.S. Rep. John Hostettler, a member of the Committee, said he was pleased with the bill, which aims to strengthen U.S. national security and includes projects for the Crane Naval Surface Warfare Center.
"We are living in uncertain times," said Hostettler. "Unlike any other point in our history, the United States faces threats from a number of shadowy and unpredictable enemies bent on killing Americans and destroying our way of life. By ensuring that armed forces and national defenses are second to none, this bill seeks to convince our enemies that any hostile action would be foolishness."
Investing in innovative technologies is important in ensuring we retain the battlefield advantage, he said.
A 4.1 percent pay raise along with retention and recruitment incentives, such as housing allowances and strengthened programs for Our national Guard and Reserve personnel are some of the benefits of the bill, which also advances critical new dimensions of military capability in the areas of missile defense, space, counter-terrorism and unconventional warfare.
In addition to several projects at Crane, the bill included $15.2 million for chemical demilitarization at the Newport Army Ammunition plant's ammunition demilitarization facility, and $2.8 million to enhance readiness centers at Camp Atterbury.