Sep 10 2008

Shelby Announces Defense Funding for the Wiregrass

U.S. Senator Richard Shelby (R-Ala.), a member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, today announced subcommittee approval of important funding for the Wiregrass included in the Department of Defense Appropriations Bill for fiscal year 2009. Following today’s action by the subcommittee, this bill will go to full committee for consideration.

“The funding approved by the subcommittee will support important defense-related programs that strengthen our national security,” said Shelby.  “These programs are critical to the stability of our nation’s military infrastructure and readiness and the subcommittee’s approval demonstrates our commitment to ensuring the safety of our citizens and the strength of our military.”

Javelin Missile - $259.3 million
“The Defense Appropriations bill includes $259.3 million to procure 605 Javelin missiles for the Army,” said Shelby.  “Javelin missiles give our ground forces a critical tactical fire capability. Produced in Troy, these missiles keep our servicemembers safe.” 

Hellfire Missile - $48.6 million
“Hellfire missiles, produced in Troy, help to ensure that our military aviators are the best equipped warriors in the sky,” said Shelby. “This bill includes $48.6 million for Hellfire missiles for the Predator Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV).” 

Non-Line-of Sight Launch System (NLOS-LS) - $217.3 million
“The NLOS-LS is a program focused on beyond line-of-sight fires for the Army's Future Combat System (FCS),” said Shelby.  “The NLOS-LS program is a containerized, platform-independent multi-mission weapon concept that will serve as an enabling technology element for the FCS.  The NLOS-LS provides rapid response and lethality in packages requiring significantly fewer personnel, decreased logistical support and lower life-cycle costs, while increasing survivability compared to current direct fire gun and missile artillery.”

Non-Line-of-Sight Cannon (NLOS-C) - $89.8 million
“The NLOS-C provides networked, extended-range targeting and precision attack in support of the warfighter with a suite of munitions that include special purpose capabilities,” said Shelby.  “The NLOS-C provides sustained fires for close support and destructive fires for tactical standoff engagement.  I believe this project is vital for the warfighter.”

Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM) -- $200.3 million
“The bill provides $200.3 million for the procurement of 175 Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM) for the Air Force and the Navy,” said Shelby.  “This long-range missile system is designed to destroy high-value, well-defended targets while its significant standoff range keeps our warfighters out of danger from enemy air defense systems.”

JASSM is produced Troy.

Army Helicopters
“The fiscal year 2009 Defense Appropriations bill includes funding for a number of helicopter systems vital to the Army and the mission at Fort Rucker,” said Shelby.

The following airframes were included:
• $638 million for modifications to the AH-64 Apache Longbow attack helicopter;
• $947.9 million for procurement of 63 UH-60 Black Hawks;
• $257.1 million for procurement of 44 Light Utility Helicopters (LUH);
• $726  million for modifications to the CH-47 Chinook Helicopter;
• $383.5 million for the procurement of 16 CH-47 Chinook Helicopters.

Joint Air-to-Ground (JAGM) Missile - $118.5 million
“I am pleased that research and development initiatives are fully funded for the Joint Air-to-Ground Missile (JAGM),” said Shelby.  “JAGM is essential because it will bolster our warfighting potential and provide our servicemen and women with a new capability to ward off the unconventional threats of the 21st century.” 

Designed as a next-generation, multipurpose replacement for the Hellfire, Longbow, and Maverick air-to-ground missiles currently used by the Army, Navy, and Marine Corps, JAGM will be a vital asset for our armed forces in years to come.

Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs)
“The DoD Appropriations bill includes, for a fourth year, language that prohibits the transfer of program authority relating to tactical UAVs from the Army,” said Shelby.  “The language ensures that the Army will retain responsibility for and operational control of the Sky Warrior UAV.  With the Army conducting the vast majority of UAV operations in Iraq, it is imperative that control of UAV assets is kept with the battlefield commander to ensure that these assets are readily available to our troops who are deploying them for tactical missions.”

UAV research and development is conducted at Redstone Arsenal, and the Army UAV Center of Excellence is located at Ft. Rucker.