Washington, D.C. – Today, Congressman David Rouzer voted in support of Fiscal Year 2018 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), a bill considered by Congress every year to authorize funding levels for the military to continue its operations, strengthen our readiness, care for our troops and remain a global leader.  Specifically, the FY18 NDAA Conference Report authorizes base budget requirements of $634.2 billion, a $26.4 billion increase above the President’s budget request. 

“Our military today is essentially operating with the equipment purchased during the Reagan Administration.  That was three decades ago.  In recent years, our military has just been getting by – facing automatic yearly cuts due to the Budget Control Act of 2011 – absent annual intervention by Congress to restore some of the funding.  Unfortunately, these cuts have occurred at time when the world has grown that much more dangerous. 

For these reasons, I voted for the FY18 NDAA Conference Report, which provides the authorization for our troops to receive the largest pay raise in 8 years, reforms the way the Pentagon does business, increases the size of our military, and authorizes key investments in critical military capabilities to confront aggression and address the ever-evolving threats from around the globe.  Passage of this bill is important to not only our national defense, but also for our military installations in North Carolina.  It is my hope that the appropriators will act swiftly to fully fund these authorized levels of spending.”

The FY18 NDAA Conference Report:

  • Authorizes increases to the size of the Army, Navy, Marines, Air Force Army Guard and Reserve, Naval and Air Reserve, and Air Guard;
  • Fully funds a 2.4% pay raise for our troops;
  • Permanently preserves Special Survivor Indemnity Allowance (SSIA) payments to surviving military spouses so that individuals whose spouses died either on active duty or during retirement will continue to receive $310 per month plus COLA indefinitely;
  • Includes additional physical examinations, mental health assessments and a study on safe opioid prescribing practices;
  • Protects victims of sexual assault and enhances tools available to prosecute perpetrators;
  • Increases funding by $1.4 billion to restore and modernize military facilities and installations;
  • Adds $4.4 billion above the President’s initial budget request to meet critical missile defense needs;
  • Authorizes the Secretary of Defense to enhance military training and exercises with allies and partner nations to help prioritize United States defense interests in critical regions;
  • Requires the Administration to clarify U.S. strategy and objectives on North Korea, Afghanistan, Syria, Iraq, Russia;
  • Fully funds $8 billion for cyber operations, an increase of $1.7 billion, and fully supports the Department of Defense’s defensive and offensive cyberspace capabilities and strategies;
  • Ensures no detainees from Guantanamo Bay are transferred to U.S. soil; and,
  • Makes major reforms in Pentagon buying practices including e-commerce, defense contract auditing, and increased oversight to service contracts.

The FY2018 Conference Report passed the House of Representatives with a vote of 356-70.  The report now heads to the U.S. Senate for consideration.  Following the anticipated passage by the U.S. Senate, the FY2018 Conference Report will then go to the President’s desk to be signed into law.