House Passes Key Carbajal Environmental, Cybersecurity and Education Provisions In Defense Bill

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Washington, May 24, 2018 | comments
Today, Congressman Salud Carbajal (CA-24), a member of the House Armed Services Committee, voted to pass the FY19 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).
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Today, Congressman Salud Carbajal (CA-24), a member of the House Armed Services Committee, voted to pass the FY19 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

Carbajal’s amendments were included in the final bill to authorize San Luis Obispo’s cybersecurity training facility, halt the Air Force decision to outsource medical response positions at Vandenberg AFB, address our water shortages, support female servicemembers during training, and enhance our military and educational partnerships at local research universities. The bill also increased pay for our troops by 2.6%, the largest in nine years.

“As a Marine Corps veteran, I am honored to serve a committee dedicated to supporting our servicemembers who are bravely serving to protect our national security interests,” said Carbajal. “As the authorizing bill for the Department of Defense, this legislation outlines the policy to help the men and women serving to protect our country including those serving on the Central Coast. This bill is not perfect and I believe we must do more work to reduce our nuclear weapons stockpile. However, I’m pleased that this year’s defense spending package will include important investments that reflect our Central Coast values.”

Cybersecurity Training Complex

  • Carbajal passed authorizing language in the NDAA that would create a National Guard Cyber Security Training Center Pilot Program and builds support for an existing Cyber Training Complex at Camp San Luis Obispo. This pilot program will collaborate with academic institutions to develop curriculum to provide educational training on protecting critical infrastructure alongside other agencies and partners.  It will also implement curriculum to educate the National Guard on the different missions carried out under Titles 10 and 32.

Vandenberg Firefighters Certification

  • Carbajal included language in the NDAA to halt the Air Force’s decision to downgrade Vandenberg Air Force Base Fighters’ current medical certification level and reduce medical care available to those on and around the base. Carbajal’s language would prohibit the Secretary of the Air Force from continuing its transition of Federal Emergency Services certification levels until it provides a report to Congress.

General President Harold A. Schaitberger of the International Association of Fire Fighters said, ”When a person suffers an injury or a medical emergency, it is essential that highly skilled responders arrive on the scene as quickly as possible.  With fire stations strategically located in the community, fire fighters continue to be the best resource to deliver urgent emergency medical care.  The IAFF thanks Representative Salud Carbajal for safeguarding our military warriors with his amendment directing the Air Force to justify an arbitrary decision to downgrade the skill levels of emergency medical care providers in the Air Force fire service.”

Strengthening Water Resiliency and Security on Military Bases

  • Carbajal authored an amendment to strengthen water sustainability and operations readiness on American military installations. The amendment directs the Secretary of Defense to report on innovative ways to reduce water use across installations and to identify opportunities to replicate the successful water-saving tactics currently deployed at our installations strengthen base readiness. Read more.

Female Body Armor Improvements

  • Carbajal secured a $2 million increase in funding for female body armor procurement. Carbajal also passed language requiring a Defense Department report on the development and procurement of female protective equipment for service members in combat occupations. Currently, female servicemembers are only provided properly designed and fitted equipment right before deployment, forcing women in the infantry and armor units to train in male equipment.

Vania Leveille, senior legislative counsel at the American Civil Liberties Union said, “The integration of women in ground combat occupations and units has been underway for several years and it is unconscionable that the Department of Defense, U.S. Army and U.S. Marine Corps still have not provided all our service  women with properly-fitted and –sized equipment for training and deployment. A policy of integration is meaningless if service women are forced to make do with items intended and designed for men.  The status quo undermines service women's safety, effectiveness, and lethality. We thank Rep. Carbajal for his amendment addressing this prolonged wrong done to the brave women who put their lives on the line for our nation. We look forward to working with him and others to ensure progress continues.”

 

Educational Partnership Agreements

  • Carbajal secured $5 million in authorized funding for the Defense Department Educational Partnership Agreement at Cal Poly. This funding supplements two programs on Cal Poly’s campus – the High-Performance Computing Lab and the Electrical and Micro Propulsion Lab. This amendment encourages DoD-academia research partnerships on the Central Coast that will ultimately help sustain the United States’ technological edge.

 

The bill passed the House in a bipartisan 351-66 vote this morning.

The annual NDAA covers the breadth of the operations of the Department of Defense as well as the national security functions of the Department of Energy and other related areas. The annual national defense budget involves millions of military and civilian personnel, thousands of facilities, and hundreds of agencies, departments, and commands located around the world.

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