|Release Date: June 23, 2022|
|Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler (R-Mo.), Ranking Member of the Tactical Air and Land Forces Subcommittee, issued the following statement after the House Armed Services Committee passed the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2023 out of committee:|
“America is facing threats on multiple fronts, exponentially increasing the need for our military to possess the capabilities and capacity necessary to deter adversaries, quickly respond to crisis, provide support to our allies, and — when necessary — fight and defeat any adversary threat to our national security.
For the second year in a row, President Biden has made it clear that he is not interested in continuing the military investments started under President Trump. This narrow minded disregard for our military would lead America down the wrong path. The bill passed by the committee rejects President Biden’s budget request and properly invests in the security and safety of our nation.”
Hartzler included significant initiatives in the bill, including several wins for Missouri:
8 F/A-18 Super Hornets and 24 F-15EX aircraft, which are made in St. Louis by Boeing.
Funding for Army small caliber ammunition, which are produced at the Lake City Army Ammunition Plant (LCAAP).
Funding to support needed modernization and safety upgrades at LCAAP.
Full funding for the B-21 program, which will eventually replace the B-2 at Whiteman Air Force Base. Modernization funding for the B-2 to ensure the aircraft maintains its long-range strike capability until the B-21 is fully operational.
Protects criminal investigative command (CID) training at Fort Leonard Wood.
Includes Hartzler’s Help for All Servicemembers Act, which expands the current authorization of support for chaplain-led programs to include resiliency, suicide prevention, and holistic wellness for single service members.
Includes Hartzler’s Connecting the Community to End Military Suicide Act, which allows a service member to take up to two weeks of permissive temporary duty each year to attend a seminar, retreat, workshop, or outdoor recreational therapy event hosted by a non-profit that focuses on psychological, physical, spiritual, or social wellness.
Requires the DoD to provide Congress with information on the number of involuntary and voluntary discharges related to DoD’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate. Requires the DoD and USDA to provide information to Congress on the capability and capacity to prevent and respond to a foreign animal disease outbreak, such as Foot and Mouth Disease.
Hartzler also offered an amendment to prohibit the DoD from requiring service members to receive the COVID-19 vaccine if the service member had a previous COVID-19 infection resulting in sustained antibody protection. Unfortunately, this amendment was defeated largely along party lines.
The NDAA is annual legislation that determines the policies and funding levels for the Department of Defense and other national security entities.