House Approves Three McMorris Rodgers Bills, Pay Raise for Fairchild Troops in Annual Defense Bill

House of Representatives Passes FY23 National Defense Authorization Act

Jul 14, 2022
Press
Veterans

Washington, D.C. –  Eastern Washington Congresswoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (WA-05) today released the following statement after the House of Representatives passed the FY23 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which included three bills she wrote and a number of wins for servicemembers in Eastern Washington:

“This year’s National Defense Authorization Act provides many of the resources needed to strengthen America’s military and bolster our national defense at a time when foreign adversaries are threatening our global security,” said Rodgers. “The NDAA will ensure our military is equipped with the tools it needs to keep us safe and free, while also providing our servicemembers with a much-deserved pay raise. 

“I’m also proud to have three pieces of my legislation passed as part of this year’s defense bill – the RELIEVE Act, the DEFEND Act, and the Bobby Moran Soldier’s Medal Retirement Act,” she continued. “The passage of these bills is a huge bipartisan achievement that will go a long way towards improving the lives of veterans in Eastern Washington and strengthening our position on the world stage.” 

The House-passed version of this year’s NDAA included the provisions to bolster America’s national defense and support servicemembers around the world, including at Fairchild Air Force Base in Eastern Washington. It also included three pieces of legislation Cathy introduced earlier this year.

Servicemember Pay and Benefits

  • Supports a 4.6% pay increase for servicemembers.
  • Provides a 2.4% pay bonus for enlisted personnel to counteract the impacts of inflation on low-income military families.
  • Includes $500 million for additional housing allowances to counteract the skyrocketing cost of rent on military families.

Parental Rights

Establishes a Servicemember Parents’ Bill of Rights to:

  • Ensure parents of children attending DoD schools can review curriculum, instructional materials, and disciplinary policies;
  • Have regular access to teachers and administrators; and
  • Protect servicemember children from medical examinations and screenings without parental consent.

Military Spouses

  • Permanently authorizes reimbursement of spouse professional relicensing fees due to servicemember change of station.

Military Construction & Facility Improvements

  • Authorizes $16.5 billion for military construction and military family housing projects throughout the United States and around the world.

COVID-19 Vaccine

  • Extends the prohibition on a dishonorable discharge for servicemembers who refuse a COVID-19 vaccination.
  • Prohibits the implementation of the COVID-19 vaccine mandate on defense contractors until the Department of Defense reports to Congress on its impact on procurement timelines and military readiness.

Border Security

  • Fully funds the National Guard’s operation and maintenance account to support a border deployment.

Protecting Eastern Washington Aircrafts

  • Helps ensure the Air Force does not retire the KC-135 aircraft without a 1-for-1 replacement with the new KC-46A tanker needed to support the refueling mission at Fairchild Air Force Base.
  • Tasks the Air Force with creating a plan to transfer KC-135s to the Air National Guard as they are replaced by KC-46As instead of retiring them.
  • Requires the Air Force and Air National Guard to maintain a fleet of fixed wing, manned ISR/IAA (Intelligence, Surveillance, and Reconnaissance/Incident Awareness and Assessment) aircraft, such as the RC-26b or new aircraft with equivalent or improved capabilities, to conduct operations.

Cathy’s Legislation

CLICK HERE for more on the RELIEVE Act.

CLICK HERE for more on the Bobby Moran Soldier’s Medal Retirement Act.

CLICK HERE for more on the DEFEND Act.

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