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CRAMER: Defense Appropriations Bill Strengthens Military, Gives Troops Pay-Raise

Mar 8, 2017
Press Release

Click Here for Audio Statement 

Congressman Kevin Cramer voted with a majority of his colleagues today to pass H.R. 1301, the Department of Defense Appropriations Act, 2017.

The bill provides $516.1 billion for the Department of Defense in fiscal year 2017 – an increase of $2 billion from last year’s base discretionary spending. H.R. 1301 also allocates $61.8 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) funding – $3.2 billion higher than current levels. Other highlights of the legislation include a $132.1 billion budget to support a pay increase for troops, and $117.8 billion for upgrades to military equipment including the MQ1 Predator drone, UH-72 helicopter, and UH-60 Blackhawk helicopter, all of which have missions in North Dakota.

“Our military has been underfunded and underpaid for some time now. While we have more work to do, this is a positive step,” said Cramer. “Often lost in the various debates of the day is the fact that one of our first priorities as a federal government is to protect our nation. In order to do so in a rapidly changing and dangerous world, we need to ensure we have a well-equipped military. Today’s action points us in the right direction.”

“To keep our status as the world’s best military, we must continue to answer the needs of our soldiers, airmen, sailors, and marines.  That means modernizing our equipment, investing in needed platforms, and doing what we can to retain our talented men and women in uniform.  A pay increase as well as funding for defense health will help do just that.”

In addition to the House bill passed today, an additional defense supplemental is expected in the near future to further bolster the U.S. Military.

For more information on the legislation, click here.