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HomePoliticsSenator Marsha Blackburn Secures Major Wins For Tennessee In National Defense Bill

Senator Marsha Blackburn Secures Major Wins For Tennessee In National Defense Bill

U.S. SenateWashington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Marsha Blackburn (R-Tenn.), a member of the Armed Services Committee, voted for the Senate-passed 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) and secured major wins for Tennessee. The NDAA will now be sent to President Joe Biden’s desk.

The FY 2022 NDAA supports our military by providing our troops with a well-deserved 2.7 percent pay raise, making necessary improvements to military health care, and enhancing our ability to compete with Russia and China.

“The passage of the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) will bolster our nation’s defenses to ensure we are able to confront adversaries like Communist China, Iran, North Korea, and Russia. The defense bill is a major victory for Tennessee service members along with their families, and the many Tennessee-based scientists and engineers who support our national security mission at home and abroad,” said Senator Blackburn. “I fought to secure major wins for our state that will directly benefit our military and research communities across Tennessee, including in Clarksville, Tullahoma, Oak Ridge, and Millington.”

The National Defense Authorization Act Passage Will Have A Direct Benefit For Clarksville, Tullahoma, Oak Ridge, And Millington Tennessee:

Senator Blackburn Pushed to Ensure Our Servicemembers Have A High Quality of Life In Clarksville by:

  • Focusing on the psychological health and cognitive performance of special operations forces, which will benefit Fort Campbell’s community of special operators and their families. 
  • Improving employment outcomes for Fort Campbell enlisted soldiers and their families as they transition from active duty to the civilian workforce.
  • Funding a pilot program for Tennessee’s active-duty military spouses to transfer professional licenses across state lines, including spouses in health care and education professions, which will support the large community of military spouses based at Fort Campbell.
  • Ensuring continuity of care for families enrolled in the Exceptional Family Member Program.

Senator Blackburn’s Efforts Will Strengthen Defense Capabilities In Tullahoma by:

  • Expanding Arnold Air Force Base’s ability to execute test programs for critical military technology, such as Hypersonic Munitions, Next Generation Bomber, and Future Strike Aircraft.
  • Designating Arnold Air Force Base as a hypersonic facility to improve research capabilities and technological development.
  • Funding Ground Based Strategic Deterrent research programs.
  • Providing additional support and planning for the Test Cell Delivery Bay, Primary Pump Station, Nitrogen Conversion Facility, and PV Arrays and Battery Storage projects at Arnold Air Force Base and Arnold Engineering and Development Complex.
  • Authorizing additional funding for high-resolution modeling technology, which is manufactured primarily in Tullahoma, Tennessee.

Oak Ridge National Lab and Y-12 National Security Complex Are Global Leaders in Research, Development, and Production. Senator Blackburn Pushed for Critical Lab Projects Such As:

  • Modernizing depleted uranium technology, reestablishing domestic uranium enrichment in Tennessee, and providing additional funding to support national nuclear defense at the Y-12 National Security Complex.
  • Funding decontamination and decommissioning of nuclear facilities at Y-12 National Security Complex.
  • Providing the Oak Ridge National Laboratory with funding for materials, uranium and lithium, nonproliferation expertise, and associated research facilities.

The Navy’s Mid-South Base In Millington, Tennessee Will Be Offered Additional Support For Personnel And Defense Capabilities:

  • Providing guidelines for the current Navy Community College pilot to multiply the educational opportunities for enlisted personnel, focusing on high-skilled competencies.
  • Increasing the authorized number of special promotable Lieutenant Commander (O-4) billets in the Navy for officers with critical skills.

Big Wins For Tennessee:

Tennessee’s Community Of Military Families Will Benefit As A Direct Result Of Senator Blackburn’s Leadership:

  • Creating a provision to ensure lower income servicemembers can meet the basic needs of their families, particularly for food expenses.
  • Expanding mentorship, counseling, and support for the special operations community, including our Green Berets and Night Stalkers, to improve quality of life and retention.

The Soldiers Of The Tennessee National Guard Will Have Access To Additional Resources:

  • Procuring additional UH-60 helicopters, which is the staple platform of the 101st Airborne, 160th SOAR, and Tennessee Army National Guard.
  • Prohibiting reduction of KC-135 Air National Guard primary aircraft inventory in the fiscal year 2022. This aircraft has excelled in its role for more than 50 years, and it also provides aerial refueling support to Air Force, Navy and Marine Corps, and allied nation aircraft.

Click here for more information on Senator Blackburn’s work in the FY 2022 NDAA to support Tennessee servicemembers and strengthen national defense capabilities.

The executive summary of the FY21 NDAA can be found here.

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