WASHINGTON, DC -- Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the bipartisan National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for fiscal year 2021. The legislation provides $740 billion for stronger national defense, nuclear modernization, critical funding for next steps in the COVID-19 defense response, and a 3% pay raise for U.S. troops. The NDAA also lays the foundation for an Indo-Pacific Deterrence Initiative to confront China.
"The NDAA is far from perfect, but this is a beginning bipartisan effort to express unified support and funding for our military during this unprecedented COVID-19 pandemic. The U.S. Senate still has the opportunity to further clean up defense cuts and unnecessary policies driven by House Democrats that could hinder defense response during emergencies. We've managed to find a common path for the NDAA over the last 60 years and I am hopeful that the final legislation will provide the progress we desperately need to keep our nation safe, along with strong support for our troops and military families," said Congressman Rogers, a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee. "I was also pleased that the bill includes strong measures to deter and respond to Chinese threats in the Pacific and around the world, and ensure the U.S. leads the way with rapidly emerging technology."
The NDAA authorizes $130.6 billion to boost advanced weapons systems and $106.2 billion for Research Development Test and Evaluation. In addition to the 3% pay raise for troops, the act includes additional support for military families.
It prepares the Department of Defense with COVID-19 diagnostic equipment, testing capabilities and personal protective equipment necessary to protect our Armed Forces. It also requires the National Security Strategy to address the provision of drugs, biologics, vaccines and other critical medical equipment to ensure combat readiness and health protection.
The NDAA includes funding for science and technology and investments in critical emerging technology areas, including artificial intelligence, autonomous systems, and biotechnology.
Following the passage of the Senate’s version of the NDAA, the House and Senate will begin a Conference Committee to reconcile the bills’ differences before it can be sent to the President for signature.