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Senate Approves Defense Bill That Includes Senator Collins' Provisions For BIW, Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Saco Defense, and Umaine

Press Release

Date: July 24, 2009
Location: Washington, DC
Issues: Defense

Senate Approves Defense Bill That Includes Senator Collins' Provisions For BIW, Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, Saco Defense, and Umaine

Bill also authorizes $28 million for construction of new hangar at Bangor Air National Guard base

With the support of Senator Susan Collins, the U.S. Senate, late Thursday, approved the fiscal year 2010 Defense Authorization bill, which authorizes $679.8 billion in funding for the U.S. Department of Defense. The bill includes key provisions authored by Senator Collins that will support work at Bath Iron Works, Portsmouth Naval Shipyard, the University of Maine, Saco Defense, and other Maine companies that support our national security efforts.

"This legislation contains a variety of crucial provisions that will provide critical force protection to our men and women in uniform; restore our military's readiness; and continue the development of technologies to counter existing and emerging threats. It also includes key shipbuilding provisions that are important to the Navy, Bath Iron Works, and our overall national security," said Senator Collins, who is a member of the Senate Armed Services and Appropriations Committees. "In addition, the Senate has again recognized the valuable contributions of Maine companies to our national security by supporting my request to authorize funding for important defense programs in our state."

At Senator Collins' request, the Senate bill helps ensure a continued and steady workload at BIW by authorizing $1 billion in funding for construction of the third DDG-1000 and honors the agreement, that Senator Collins helped negotiate, to build all three of these ships at BIW. In addition, this legislation authorizes $2.2 billion for continued DDG-51 procurement, nearly $150 million for the DDG-51 modernization program, and $1.4 billion for the Littoral Combat Ship (LCS) program.

This legislation also includes a provision, authored by Senator Collins, that would authorize federal agencies to reemploy retired federal employees on a limited basis, without forcing the employee to take a reduction in salary corresponding to their retirement annuity.

In addition, the FY 2010 Defense Authorization bill also authorizes a 3.4 percent across-the-board pay increase for service members, a half percent above the President's budget request and repeals a Congressional mandate that large surface combatants be nuclear powered.

This legislation will now be conferenced with a similar House bill.