A deal has been reached on a whopping $700 billion defense policy bill for fiscal year 2018 that would allow for increased attack submarine production. The bill still requires final approval from the House and Senate.
A conference committee, made up of lawmakers including U.S. Rep. Joe Courtney, D-2nd District, and U.S. Sen. Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., negotiated for weeks and announced that they’d reached a deal on Wednesday. Both Courtney and Blumenthal put out statements hailing the deal and the bipartisan work that led up to it.
The compromise bill is about $80 billion more than what was authorized last year for the Defense Department, and is about $85 billion above what the law allows for fiscal year 2018.
It authorizes 20,000 more service members, nearly $8 billion in funding for submarine programs, and denies a round of base closings and consolidations in 2021, which the Trump administration requested, to name a few proposals.
The bill also authorizes an increase in attack submarine production. It would allow a block of up to 13 Virginia-class attack submarines to be built over a five-year period, instead of 10 subs, the number built in recent blocks. The contract for the next block of Virginia subs is being negotiated.
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