Week ending November 17, 2017
HR2810 Defense Authorization (Conference Report)
The Conference Report would authorize funding for the Department of Defense and other related agencies, programs, and operations for Fiscal Year 2018. It authorizes approximately $634.2 billion in base budget authority ($605.5 billion for the Department of Defense (DOD), $20.6 billion for the defense-related activities of the Department of Energy (DOE), and $300 million for defense-related activities) and approximately $65.7 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) for a total defense discretionary topline of $699.9 billion for Fiscal Year 2018.
The total funding authorized in the Conference Report will exceed both the Administration’s request of $668 billion total in discretionary funding, and the Budget Control Act’s (BCA) defense cap of $549 billion for Fiscal Year 2018. This results in $77.5 billion in base funding above the BCA caps. The initial House-passed bill authorized $72.5 billion above the BCA caps.
The Conference Report supports a 2.4 percent pay increase for military personnel, updates the Uniform Code of Military Justice to include new protections against military sexual assault, and retains the milestone House-passed provision recognizing that climate change poses a direct threat to U.S. national security interests. It addresses the military readiness gaps by authorizing $3.6 billion in additional operations and maintenance funds for the Army, Navy, Marine Corps, and Air Force. It does not include any provisions related to LGBT service members, including any language banning transgender services members from military service or limiting transgender service members’ ability to receive health care. The Conference Report removes language from the Senate-passed bill that would have prevented DOD from using Congressionally Directed Medical Research funds to perform research on diseases linked to military readiness, traumatic brain injuries and a cure for breast cancer.
The Conference Report contains measures to strengthen U.S. deterrence capabilities against Russian aggression, including strategies to analyze Russia’s strategic objectives, the threat it poses, and a plan to counter Russian efforts to undermine democratic values both domestically and abroad. Further, it strengthens U.S. cyber capabilities and efforts to counter information operations of adversaries, while enhancing U.S. and allied information operations. The legislation supports our ongoing efforts against ISIS, while maintaining congressional oversight over the Syria train and equip program, and requires the President to submit a report on a comprehensive strategy for Syria. It enhances our security relationships in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region, and continues $350 million in security assistance to Ukraine while requiring institutional reforms to address corruption. $706 million will be allocated for the Israeli missile defense programs. The Conference Report establishes a goal of $41 million to support women in the Afghan National Defense and Security Forces, as well as renews authority to issue special visas for Afghans who supported U.S. efforts in Afghanistan and increases the number of available visas to 3,500 visas.
The legislation maintains existing restrictions on domestic transfers of Guantanamo detainees and prevents the use of funds for construction or modification of U.S. facilities to house Guantanamo detainees.
Status: Passed House /
VOTES and FLOOR ACTION
On Passage: On agreeing to the conference report Agreed to by the Yeas and Nays: 356 – 70 (Roll no. 631).
Motion to recommit:
Text of the motion:
COST AND IMPACT
Cost to the taxpayers: $634.2 billion
Pay-as-you-go requirements: Data not available
Regulatory and Other Impact: Data not available
Dynamic Scoring: Data not available
Tax Complexity: Not applicable to this bill.
Earmark Certification: Data not available
Duplication of programs: Data not available
Direct Rule-Making: Data not available
Advisory Committee Statement: Data not available
Budget Authority: Data not available
Constitutional Authority: Assumed.
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