House Appropriations Committee Releases 2018 Defense Funding Bill

The House Appropriations Committee released a draft of the fiscal 2018 Defense Appropriations bill on Sunday. The legislation would provide $658.1 billion for the Department of Defense, $18.4 billion more than President Donald Trump laid out in his non-binding budget blueprint, The Hill reports.

The Appropriations draft was released ahead of any Budget Committee text, though that committee is supposed to set the Department of Defense funding level.

The draft includes $584.2 billion in discretionary funding, according to Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen, an increase of $68.1 billion from fiscal 2017. The bill also provides $73.9 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations/Global War on Terrorism funding.

“After years of unnecessary and unwise cuts to our national security under the last Administration, this legislation is a step forward in rebuilding our military and ensuring our nation is ready to meet any new or existing threat,” Frelinghuysen said in the statement.

“Not only will this bill help provide our troops and commanders with the resources they need to do their jobs, it also will ensure the success of our missions, the safety of our people, and the stability we need around the globe to make a brighter and more secure future for all”, he added.

The bill includes $133 billion for base requirements and $5.3 billion to provide for 1,324,000 active-duty troops and 822,900 Guard and Reserve troops, while it also fully funds a 2.4 percent pay raise for the military.

The draft also provides $282 million for cancer research, $125 million for traumatic brain injury and psychological health research, and $277 million for sexual assault prevention and response.

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