Frelinghuysen Hails House Passage of Omnibus Appropriations Act

Frelinghuysen Hails House Passage of Omnibus Appropriations Act

Support for Armed Force, Intel Community Comprises Largest Funding Category

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Calling it “absolutely critical for the national security of the United States,” U.S. Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen today hailed passage of H.R. 2029, the Consolidated Appropriations Act for Fiscal 2016.  “The American people are justifiably concerned about their security,” said Frelinghuysen, the chairman of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee.  “The defense section of this “Omnibus” Appropriations Act funds our troops, improves their readiness, allows our Armed Forces to conduct operations overseas and cares for military families and the wounded.  It is a major component of the effort to keep America and Americans safe.” 

The “Omnibus” legislation contains the fiscal year 2016 Defense Appropriations bill for the range of military activities which protect American interests around the globe. The bill includes funds to combat the real-world threat of the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), al Qaeda and other terrorist organizations, to continue operations in Afghanistan and Iraq, and to combat other current and emerging threats to national security from Iran, Russia, North Korea and China.

In total, the Defense portion of the “Omnibus” contains $514.1 billion in base discretionary funding, $23.9 billion above the fiscal year 2015 level. This bill also includes $58.6 billion in Global War on Terror/Overseas Contingency Operations (GWOT) funding. This level reflects the increased defense discretionary funding provided by the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2015, which was enacted on November 2.


Ongoing Military Operations – The bill contains $58.6 billion in GWOT/OCO funding for ongoing military operations abroad. This funding level will provide needed resources and training for our troops to conduct successful operations and fight our enemies around the globe. This includes funds to combat the threat presented by ISIL, train our Iraqi allies, continue combat operations in Afghanistan, reinforce European countries facing Russian aggression, support allies in the Middle East and Africa, and increase intelligence and surveillance capabilities.

Military Personnel and Pay – The legislation includes $129.2 billion to provide pay for 1,308,915 active-duty troops and 811,000 reserves. This funding level is $1.2 billion above the fiscal year 2015 enacted level. The bill fully funds the one percent pay raise for the military and provides $300 million above the request to address the housing allowance shortfall – ensuring secure housing for all eligible troops and their families.

Defense Health and Military Family Programs – The bill contains $32.3 billion for the Defense Health Program to provide care for our troops, military families, and retirees. This is $260 million above the fiscal year 2015 enacted level, and includes a $1.1 billion increase above the President’s request for important research on traumatic brain injury and psychological health, cancer, and suicide prevention outreach programs, among others.

Operation and Maintenance – The legislation includes $167.5 billion for operation and maintenance – $5.8 billion above the fiscal year 2015 enacted level. Within this amount, priority is placed on key areas such as essential readiness programs to prepare our troops for combat and peacetime missions, flying hours, tank miles, steaming days, equipment and depot maintenance, and base operations.

Of the funds provided by the bill for operation and maintenance, $609 million above the President’s request is included to address shortfalls in military readiness, training, and depot maintenance – ensuring that our troops are well prepared and supported to meet all current and emerging threats.

The bill also includes $263.3 million for Sexual Assault Prevention and Response programs, and an additional $25 million to continue the expansion of the Sexual Assault Victims’ Counsel program to all military services.

Research and Development – The bill contains $69.8 billion for research, development, testing, and evaluation of new defense technologies, such as the Ohio Class Submarine replacement and the Long-Range Strike bomber. These efforts will help to advance the safety and success of current military operations and prepare our nation to meet a broad range of security threats in the future.

Equipment Procurement – The legislation provides a total of $111 billion for new equipment and upgrades. This funding is necessary to ensure our nation’s military readiness, and will provide the platforms, weapons, and other equipment our forces need to train, maintain our force, and to conduct successful operations. Some of these equipment purchases will include:

  • 68 F-35 Joint-Strike Fighters
  • 102 Blackhawk Helicopters
  • 64 Remanufactured Apache Helicopters
  • Three Littoral Combat Ships
  • Two Attack Submarines
  • Two DDG-51 Guided Missile Destroyers
  • Seven EA-18G Growlers and five F-18E/F Super Hornets
  • 12 KC-46 Tankers

Guantanamo Bay – The legislation prohibits funding for transfers of Guantanamo detainees to the U.S. or its territories, prohibits funding to modify or acquire any facility in the U.S. to house detainees, and places conditions on the release of detainees to other countries. These provisions are similar to the 2016 National Defense Authorization Act.