June 18, 2018

Manchin Votes to Pass NDAA Which Includes Reimburseemnt for Martinsburg Big Springs Water Plant

Manchin secured other West Virginia priorities in the NDAA

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Senator Joe Manchin (D-WV) voted to pass the National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), a vital piece of legislation that will provide our military with the means necessary to defend our nation. The NDAA includes language that Senator Manchin fought to include that will allow the Department of Defense (DoD) to pay for clean-up costs related to contamination of Martinsburg water supply.

“In 2016, the EPA issued a new advisory for PFOA in drinking water.  Martinsburg and other West Virginia municipalities were faced with the daunting news that their citizens needed alternative drinking water sources due to unacceptable levels of the substance in their drinking water systems.  Martinsburg has additionally been affected by contamination at the Shepherd Air National Guard Base. I have worked with the EPA, the DoD and Martinsburg officials to make sure that they are reimbursed for costs related to clean up after PFOA was detected in the water supply and I am glad it was included in the NDAA,” Senator Manchin said. 

“This defense package also includes funding to support our West Virginia service members and facilities, our troops and the defense of our nation. Although the cost is high, I believe the investment in our servicewomen and men, and our overall national defense is worth the price.”

The NDAA authorizes a total of $716 billion for our national defense. This includes $639 billion in base funding and about $69 billion for “Overseas Contingency Operations.” First and foremost, this legislation authorizes resources for our men and women in uniform and their families:

  • Authorizes service secretaries to pay for PFOA and PFOS clean-up in drinking water from wells operated by local water authorities.
  • Authorizes the National Guard Bureau to use Defense Environmental Restoration Account to make payments and it authorizes an increase of $15 million for National Guard Operations and Maintenance accounts for PFOS and PFOA clean-up purposes.
  • Authorizes keeping penalties in place against Chinese telecommunications firm ZTE and would restore penalties on the company for violating export controls and bar US government agencies from purchasing or leasing equipment or services from ZTE and Huawei.
  • Authorizes programs to carefully manage opioid prescriptions.
  • Encourages the use of big data analytics for business operations, the hiring of world class management talent, and the support of activities to help the Department pass a financial audit.
  • Directs the Secretary of Defense to transport, at US expense, retiring Military Working Dogs stationed overseas back to the continental Unites States for adoption.
  • Authorizes a 2.6% pay raise for members of the Armed Forces, the largest pay raise since 2010
  • Authorizes an end strength increase to bring the active-duty force to a total of 1,338,1000 to meet the requirements of the National Defense Strategy.
  • Modernizes the 38-year-old officer personnel system to provide career flexibility and better serve the demands of today’s force.
  • Authorizes $145.9 billion for military personnel, including costs of pay, allowances, bonuses, death benefits, and permanent change of station moves.
  • Authorizes $32.5 billion for the Defense Health Program.
  • Authorizes $11.4 billion for military construction, including family housing and operational and support infrastructure.
  • Includes the bipartisan Foreign Investment Risk Review Modernization Act (FIRRMA) which Senator Manchin cosponsored to modernize and strengthen the review of foreign acquisitions, mergers, and other investments that pose potential national security risks.