Sep 07 2006

SHELBY ANNOUNCES SENATE PASSAGE OF DEFENSE FUNDING FOR WIREGRASS

U. S. Senator Richard C. Shelby (R-AL), a member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, today announced Senate approval of important funding for the Wiregrass are included in the Department of Defense Appropriations Bill for fiscal year 2007.  Following today’s action by the Senate, this bill will now go to conference committee with the House of Representatives.

Senator Shelby said, “The Senate approved funding for these important defense-related programs that will help to strengthen our national security.  These programs are critical to the stability of our nation's military infrastructure and readiness, and today's approval demonstrates our commitment to ensuring the safety of our citizens.”

JAVELIN MISSILES -- $170.968 million

“The Senate approved $83.782 million to procure 300 Javelin missiles for the Army as well as $76.815 million for the replacement of Marine Corps’ Javelin wartime expenditures,” said Senator Shelby.  “Javelin missiles give our ground forces a critical tactical fire capability and are produced at the Lockheed Martin facility in Troy, keeping our servicemembers safe and keeping Alabama’s economy strong.”  In addition, the bill included $10.371 million for modifications to the Javelin missile.

PREDATOR HELLFIRE MISSILE -- $39.912 million

“Hellfire missiles help to ensure our military aviators are the best equipped warriors in the sky and are produced at the Lockheed Martin facility in Troy,” said Senator Shelby.  “This bill includes $39.912 million for 677 hellfire missiles for the Predator Unmanned Aerial Vehicle (UAV).”

JOINT AIR-TO-SURFACE STANDOFF MISSILE -- $147.165 million

“The Senate approved $147.165 million for 235 Joint Air-to-Surface Standoff Missile (JASSM) for the Air Force,” said Senator Shelby.  “This missile system is produced at the Lockheed Martin facility in Troy.”

NON-LINE-OF-SIGHT - LAUNCH SYSTEM -- $325.8 million

“The Non-Line-of-Sight - Launch System (NLOS-LS) is a program focused on beyond line-of-sight fires for the Army's Future Combat System (FCS),” said Senator Shelby.  “The NLOS-LS program is a containerized, platform-independent multi-mission weapon concept 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 -- $12.237 million

“The Non-Line-of-Sight Cannon (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 Senator Shelby.  “The NLOS-C provides sustained fires for close support and destructive fires for tactical standoff engagement.  I believe this project is necessary for the warfighter to best do his or her job.”

ARMY HELICOPTERS

“The Senate has approved funding for a number of helicopter systems that are vital to the Army, and the mission at Fort Rucker and in the Wiregrass area,” said Senator Shelby.

The following outlines the action taken by the Senate:

$778.641 million for modifications to the AH-64 Apache Longbow attack helicopter;
$554.551 million for procurement of 38 UH-60 Blackhawks; $105 million to replace the battle loss of 7 UH-60 Blackhawks;
$91.177 million for procurement of 16 Light Utility Helicopters (LUH);
$583.305 million for modifications to the CH-47 Chinook Helicopter; $331 million to replace the battle loss of 11 CH-47 Chinook helicopters;
$101.818 million for 12 Armed Reconnaissance Helicopters (ARH);

UNMANNED AERIAL VEHICLES (UAVs)

“The DoD Appropriations Bill included, for a second year, language that prohibits the transfer of research & development, acquisition, or program authority relating to tactical UAVs from the Army,” said Senator Shelby.  “The language ensures that the Army will retain responsibility for and operational control of the Extended Range Multi-Purpose (ERMP) UAV.  UAVs provide support for tactical ground combat operations for the Army, and it is important that the Army maintain control of tactical UAVs because they are vital for ground combatants.”

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