Friday, June 21, 2024

FY2024 NDAA includes provisions for Barksdale Air Force Base

by BIZ Magazine

The House passed the Fiscal Year 2024 National Defense Authorization Act Dec. 13. This annual legislation includes major priorities for the Louisiana defense community, particularly Barksdale Air Force Base along with Air Force Global Strike Command.

“As America is facing unprecedented threats across the globe, the National Defense Authorization Act will strengthen our national security against adversaries like China and Russia, and support our servicemembers by providing them with the tools necessary to continue to be the most lethal and effective fighting force in the world,” said Mike Johnson, United States Representative (LA-04) and Speaker of the House.

Provisions for Barksdale Air Force Base include:

– Weapons Generation Facility ($112 million) — Building upon the $165 million secured in the past two years for this project, the WGF will enable Barksdale to once again become a nuclear weapons Air Force Base. Currently, B-52s stationed at Barksdale must fly to North Dakota to be armed with nuclear weapons. This presents national security and efficiency issues, and the construction of a WGF at Barksdale will solidify its place as one of America’s most important military installations.

– 307th Bomb Wing Medical Facility Expansion ($7 million) — The current medical facility for the 307th Bomb Wing was constructed in 1998 and is prone to overcrowding. This funding will construct an expansion of the facility to allow the wing to more efficiently medically process personnel during training weekends and for operational purposes. Without this expansion, personnel may not be medically cleared in a timely manner, thus delaying deployments and the wing’s overall readiness standing.

– Planning and Design Funds for a new Dormitory ($7 million) and a Child Development Center ($2 million)

– Air Force B-52 Program — The B-52 remains the backbone of the U.S. bomber force and will remain so for years to come. This year’s NDAA includes over $944 million to continue support of the aircraft and give it the capabilities it needs to maintain an edge over our adversaries.

– Long Range Standoff Weapon — The B-52 is currently able to carry air launched cruise missiles (ALCM), but they are in need of a replacement missile that can penetrate modern-day air defense systems. The long-range standoff weapon is a new ALCM that is currently being developed, and this year’s NDAA includes over $891 million to keep the program on track.

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