Bridenstine votes for National Defense conference report

U.S. Rep. Jim Bridenstine, R-Oklahoma, voted for the FY17 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) conference report.

The NDAA conference report reconciles differences in the House and Senate versions passed earlier this year.   NDAA is a bipartisan bill that authorizes funding for America’s armed forces and sets Department of Defense policy.  Congress has passed the National Defense Authorization Act 55 years in a row.

The NDAA conference report:

  • Pay raise for the troops above the president’s request
  • More funding to stop the drawdown in Army soldiers and Marines
  • Expanded care at military hospitals

The NDAA conference report rejects a number of controversial policy changes in the Senate NDAA including:

  • Requiring women to register with Selective Service
  • Cuts to housing allowance (including dual military families)

In April 2016, Bridenstine introduced American Space Renaissance Act (ASRA), legislation to enact reforms across military, civil and commercial space sectors..

The conference report includes ten ASRA provisions, including:

  • Section 1605 – Modifies the terms of the Satellite Communications (SATCOM) Analysis of Alternatives (AoA) to ensure DOD uses accurate cost estimates and fully considers commercial SATCOM technologies. The Pentagon uses AoAs to help select new weapons systems to replace old programs.
  • Section 1606 – Redirects funding to jump start a pilot program to test next-generation SATCOM technologies. Private sector SATCOM companies are offering leap-ahead capacity for customers.
  • Section 1613 – Establishes a pilot program for the Air Force to buy, test and evaluate commercial weather data.