Hawaii is set to benefit from a $700 billion federal defense bill that passed the U.S. Senate on Thursday.
The National Defense Authorization Act, which will now head to the desk of President Donald Trump, will strengthen Hawaii’s security and economy during fiscal year 2018, according to a statement from Sen. Mazie Hirono, D-Hawaii. The measure includes investments of more than $300 million for military construction in the state.
“This year’s NDAA reflects the central role Hawaii plays in supporting and advancing our country’s strategic interests in the Indo-Asia-Pacific region,” she said. “From establishing the Asia Pacific Security Initiative, to fighting back against headquarters cuts at Pacific Command, and enhancing our nation’s missile defense capabilities, this legislation strengthens our national security and benefits those who serve in Hawaii and across the country.”
Hirono, who is a ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Seapower Subcommittee and the NDAA Conference Committee, was able to secure a number of provisions that could benefit Hawaii.
They include, among other things, a required review of data before assessing staffing cuts, improvements to the country’s missile defense capabilities and enhancing energy resiliency.
Sen. Brian Schatz, D-Hawaii, was also able to include language on the bill. He called for increased oversight of the Red Hill Bulk Fuel Storage Facility and an assessment of China’s influence in the Western Pacific, among others.
“This bill, and my provisions in it, reflect our state’s importance to the greater U.S. rebalance to the Asia Pacific by addressing key military needs in Hawai‘i while also funding initiatives that will improve our communities and support our local economy,” he said in a statement.
The U.S. House of Representatives passed the measure on Tuesday.
According to Reuters, the bill violates spending caps set in the 2011 Budget Control Act.
The military construction projects include:
- $90 million for Fort Shafter’s Command and Control Facility
- $73.2 million for the Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam’s Sewer Lift Station
- $65.9 million for the Navy’s Command Facility
- $26.5 million for Marine Corps Base Hawaii’s Mokapu Gate
- $25 million for the Army’s Pohakuloa Training Area
- $19 million for the Navy’s MV-22 Landing Pad
- $6 million for Energy Resiliency Projects at Marine Corps Base Hawaii
- $5.5 million for Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam’s Consolidated Training Facility
- $5 million for Wahiawa’s Kunia Tunnel Entrance