Rep. Bergman votes for 2020 Defense Bill

Budget includes provisions for troop pay raise, elimination of the widow tax, and funds to create a space force as the sixth branch of the military.

This week, Michigan’s First District U.S. Congressman Jack Bergman voted in favor of the FY 2020 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) Conference Report.

The measure will now go to President Donald J. Trump’s desk for approval.

This NDAA Conference report restores the tradition of bipartisan support for our national defense in the U.S. Congress.

The FY 2020 NDAA contains important priorities for Michigan’s First District, including: expressing the importance of the Northern Strike exercise at Camp Grayling, expressing Congressional support for the construction of a second Poe-sized lock in Sault Ste Marie, prohibiting the use of firefighting foam containing per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances (PFAS), and authorizing the National Guard to access Defense Environmental Remediation Account (DERA) funds to address PFOS and PFOA exposure and contamination in and around National Guard bases.

“The men and women of our Armed Forces sacrifice so much for our nation, Congress must ensure they have the resources needed to maintain mission readiness and have the tools necessary to confront our enemies,” said Bergman. “The FY 2020 NDAA gives our troops their largest pay raise in a decade, repeals the widow tax, and includes provisions to help mitigate the future risk of PFAS exposure.”

He added, “I’m proud to support this legislation, and give our troops the resources and consistency needed to remain the readiest and most lethal force in the world.”

Additionally, the FY 2020 NDAA:

  • Includes an additional $5.3 billion in emergency funding for military installations damaged by natural disasters
  • Provides a 3.1% pay raise for our troops, the largest increase in a decade
  • Removes poison pills included in the initial House version of the bill
  • Provides the resources to continue to rebuild readiness, advance modernization of the nuclear triad, develop emerging technologies, enhance missile defense, and confront our adversaries
  • Provides up to 12 weeks of Paid Parental Leave for the Defense Department, Intelligence Community, and across the federal government, a key administration priority
  • Includes a repeal of the “Widow’s Tax”
  • Maintains long-standing prohibitions on transferring detainees from Guantanamo Bay, constructing detention facilities in the U.S., and closing Guantanamo
  • Establishes the United States Space Force as the sixth branch of the military
  • Sanctions the Russian pipeline Nord Stream 2 and TurkStream, North Korean imports and exports of coal and other minerals, and those who supported the Assad regime.

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