Today, U.S. Senator Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee, voted to advance the committee's fiscal year 2016 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA). The bill includes key provisions Senator Heinrich worked to include that benefit New Mexico's men and women in uniform, military installations, private industry, national laboratories, and the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP).
The bill, which sets the Department of Defense spending levels and policies for the upcoming fiscal year, was reported out of committee today and will now advance to the full Senate for consideration. The bill also authorizes funding for the Department of Energy's nuclear weapons programs at Sandia and Los Alamos National Laboratories, as well as the Department of Energy's environmental cleanup programs including WIPP.
"New Mexico plays an essential role in our national security and defense, and is at the forefront of research and development that contribute immensely to our country's safety. This largely bipartisan bill supports our servicemembers and military families, and authorizes funding for important programs across our state and the nation," said Heinrich. "However, I'm disappointed that the bill uses budget gimmicks that ultimately are a disservice to our men and women in uniform. We still must find a solution to the damaging impact sequestration has on our military readiness and vital domestic programs."