WASHINGTON — The House Armed Service Committee moved out of committee the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act early this morning.

The NDAA is annual legislation that determines the funding levels and policies for the U.S. Department of Defense as well as other national security entities. Congresswoman Vicky Hartzler, of Missouri’s 4th Congressional District, played a key role in advancing the policies.

“The defense of our nation continues to be my top priority, and the 2018 National Defense Authorization bill takes significant steps to address the serious readiness crisis in our county,” said Hartzler, “Ensuring our troops have resources, training, and capabilities needed to face the growing threats of today.”

Hartzler serves as the chairwoman of the committee’s Oversight and Investigation Subcommittee which oversees the administration’s defense policies and ensures accountability within the Department of Defense. Hartzler entered her fourth term on the defense committee this year.

There are multiple Missouri specific provisions within the NDAA including the acquisition of over 20 F-18s, additional impact aid assistance for Fort Leonard Wood and Whiteman Air Force Base area schools, full funding of the B-21 program, modernization of the Defense Management System for the B-2 at Whiteman Air Force Base, funding for a new hospital facility at Fort Leonard Wood and funding support for the Army’s ammunition production plant.

Senator Claire McCaskill also secured resources in the bill for the National Geospatial Intelligence Agency in St. Louis, childcare services for the National Guard and Department of Agriculture job training for separating service members.

The legislation also includes Senator McCaskill’s Arla Harrell Act, which reverses seven decades of mistreatment by the Pentagon and the Department of Veterans Affairs toward servicemen who were intentionally exposed to chemical weapons during World War II.

“This bill is a reflection of our priorities,” said Senator McCaskill, “Provide job training to rural veterans, helping Guardsmen take care of their families while serving their county, giving relief to World War II veterans who suffered in silence the consequences of mustard gas and boosting our aerial defense capabilities.”

“I am proud that Missouri’s bases and defense industrial base will continue to be a leader in our national security,” Congresswoman Hartlzer said, “The defense authorization bill now moves to the House floor for consideration and I am confident we will be able to move this legislation forward in a bi-partisan manner.”