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House Passes National Defense Authorization Act

The men and women serving in our military sacrifice every day to ensure our safety. That is why we must make sure they are prepared and have the necessary tools and equipment to effectively and efficiently execute any mission they undertake. The funding we provide the military in the National Defense Authorization Act for the 2018 fiscal year does just that. 

We made a promise to rebuild and strengthen our military. Part of rebuilding our military includes addressing the readiness shortfall we currently face, which is why this bill allocates funding to improve our readiness on the ground, in the air, and on the seas. With all the sacrifices our servicemen and servicewomen make defending our freedom, it is important we take care of them. That is why this bill approves the largest military pay increase in eight years, along with extending special pay and bonuses.

Included in this year's NDAA bill is an amendment I offered to increase funding to the National Youth ChalleNGe Program. This program gives at-risk youth a second chance, and a chance to develop valuable life skills through civil military programs. At the Mountaineer ChalleNGe Academy at Camp Dawson I've met dozens of young people who have turned their lives around because of the program. That is why I continue to be a vocal advocate for Youth ChalleNGe.

This bipartisan bill passed overwhelmingly. The NDAA for FY 2018 is the next step in ensuring our military remains the best in the world, and has all it needs to protect our nation. 

 

Action Taken to Stop Human Trafficking

While we may not realize it, human trafficking is not only a problem in other parts of the world but at home as well. That is why the House took action to help end these heinous crimes. We passed three bipartisan bills this week that will work to put an end to the human trafficking epidemic.

Included in these bills, there are funds directed toward the prevention of human trafficking and prosecution of those found to have committed these terrible crimes. In addition, these bills have a focus on aiding and protecting victims of human trafficking. Along with 13 bills already passed earlier this summer, these 3 bills will help to eliminate human trafficking and keep our communities safe.

 

FDA Reauthorization to Help Patients 

On Wednesday, the House passed the FDA Reauthorization Act(FDARA). By passing this bill, it will increase innovation and help bring important cures to patients faster. The bill will speed up the process of approving new and innovative treatments and drugs. These potentially lifesaving treatments can be crucial to saving lives and improving patient care.

 

GI STEM Bill Introduced

It was a pleasure to attend an event with the Committee on Veterans Affairs and various veterans' organizations to unveil a package of reforms to the GI Bill. After spending time meeting and speaking with student veterans back at home, it was clear the GI Bill needed some improvements.

Unfortunately, many students entering the STEM field need more time than the GI Bill currently allows for completion of their degree. That is why I introduced a bill that would increase the timeframe of the GI Bill for students in STEM majors. With the demand for STEM majors, we should do all we can to encourage our veterans that have an interest in that area, and the least we could do is allow them proper time to complete their degree. Our veterans have given great sacrifice for our country, and it is crucial we do all that we can to help them here at home. 

 

 

Have a great weekend!

 

David B. McKinley, P.E

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