Apr 06 2005

SHELBY ANNOUNCES APPROVAL OF SUPPLEMENTAL APPROPRIATIONS BILL

Alabama Defense Programs to Benefit

WASHINGTON, DC - U.S. Senator Richard C. Shelby (R-Ala) today announced committee approval of the fiscal year 2005 Emergency Supplemental Appropriations bill. This legislation includes funding for programs and projects that benefit Alabama military installations. Following today’s action by the Appropriations Committee, this legislation will now go to the Senate floor for consideration.

Close-in Active Protection System Integration for the Stryker (CIAPS) - $12 million

Senator Shelby said, “I am pleased our bill includes $12 million in research and development funds for the Close-in Active Protection System Integration for use on the Stryker (CIAPS). CIAPS consists of a radar staring in all directions that can detect an incoming threat and launch one of an array of pre-positioned interceptors to intercept and destroy the warhead before it hits the protected vehicle. CIAPS is effective against anti-tank guided missiles (ATGMs) as well as rocket-propelled grenades (RPGs). This research will be perfomed at Redstone Arsenal in Huntsville, AL.”

Stryker procurement - $44 million

Senator Shelby said, “Our bill includes $44 million for procurement of the Stryker family of vehicles. Anniston Army Depot plays a significant role in this program, with over 1,000 Strykers already produced at the Depot, and Stryker production in Anniston continues to gain momentum. This program is a critical part of the Army's Transformation effort, and I am pleased that Anniston is helping to lead the Army into the future.”

Chemical Agents/Munitions Destruction

Senator Shelby said, “I am pleased the bill acknowledges that the chemical demilitarization program requires more funding to comply with the Strategic Arms Reduction Treaty (START).”

Specifically, the language in the bill reads: The Committee believes the chemical demilitarization program will require significantly more funding to comply with the Treaty...The Committee does not support the use of appropriated funds for any studies that consider transporting chemical munitions across state lines...Further, the Committee expects that all of the planned sites will be developed and operated to include Blue Grass (KY) and Pueblo (CO) and instructs the Department of Defense to begin obligation of funds at Blue Grass and Pueblo immediately.

“This is an important step for the Anniston Army Depot. I shared the concerns of many regarding the announcement by the Army Chemicals Material Agency that they were to study the transportation of chemical weapons across state lines,” Shelby continued.

Death Gratuity Payment

Senator Shelby said, “I believe it is critically important that the families of our men and women in the Armed Forces who make the ultimate sacrifice see compensation for their loss. This legislation increases the death gratuity payment to $100,000 in cases when death results from wounds, injuries, or illness that are combat related or occurs in a combat operation or combat zone. Further, the legislation increases the Servicemembers’ Group Life Insurance (SGLI) to $400,000 from the current $250,000. I was pleased to support this provision, which my fellow Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions introduced in the Senate.”

Remote Observation Video Encoded Receiver (ROVER)/Joint Tactical C4I Transceiver System (JTCITS) - $19 million

Senator Shelby said, “I am pleased this bill will fund additional quantities of the Remote Observation Video Encoded Receiver (ROVER) III and ancillary equipment, and complete the transformation of the ROVER III into Joint Tactical C4I Transceiver System (JTCITS). Much of the work for this programs is completed in Huntsville.”

The funding will produce operational quantities of components to field the system to a Ranger Battalion or equivalent size Special Operations unit. This system is a robust tactical wireless network that directly links the individual soldier to imagery and sensor information. This device packages these multiple essential combat capabilities, with the ability to down link imagery from an overhead platform, into a single light-weight hand held package. This program has been developed to function either as an integral part of a battlefield tactical wireless network, or to operate in a stand alone mode to provide the individual warfighter on the ground with immediate access to information available from all supporting manned and unmanned aircraft and ground sensors.

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