Kaine Secures Virginia Wins, Reforms to Address Military Sexual Assault in 2022 Defense Bill
WASHINGTON, D.C. — Today, U.S. Senator Tim Kaine, a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee (SASC), released the following statement after the Committee passed the Fiscal Year 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which includes numerous provisions he championed to benefit Virginia’s defense community, shipbuilding industry, and victims of sexual assault. This year’s NDAA also includes reforms championed by Kaine to improve housing for servicemembers and their families. The Committee also adopted Kaine’s amendment to require the Department of the Army to develop a plan to modernize their arsenals like Radford Army Ammunition Plant. The bill was reported out of committee on a bipartisan vote and will now advance to the full Senate for consideration.
"I'm proud of the wins we secured in this year’s NDAA to provide our servicemembers with the resources they need to keep our nation safe,” said Senator Kaine. “In addition to delivering much-needed support to Virginia’s defense community, this year’s NDAA includes landmark reforms to address the scourge of sexual assault in our military ranks. While more work lies ahead to negotiate the details, this NDAA takes a major step forward in reforming the system that for too long has failed to protect victims of sex-based harassment, discrimination, and violence. I appreciate the leadership of Chairman Reed and Senator Gillibrand, who are working together to make these critical reforms. Representing Virginia's military community is deeply important to me, and I will continue working to protect those who have made tremendous sacrifices for our nation."
The following list includes many of the priorities Kaine advocated during the markup process that were included in the final bill:
Topline: The Committee adopted an amendment that would add an additional $25 billion to the President’s budget, funding many of the military services’ unfunded requirements.
Shipbuilding: The bill includes over $24 billion for shipbuilding, an increase of over $2 billion, to purchase 2 Virginia class submarines, 2 Arleigh Burke-class destroyers, 1 Constellation-class Frigate and Expeditionary Fast Transport, and other support ships. The bill also provides over $12.5 billion for ship maintenance and repair at public and private shipyards.
Military Construction: The markup includes over $12 billion for Military Construction projects, including 14 projects in Virginia, totaling over $795 million:
- $6.9 million for a maintenance shop at the Army National Guard facility in Troutville
- $6.1 million for a National Guard Readiness Center addition at the Troutville facility
- $269.6 million for Submarine Pier 3 at Naval Station Norfolk
- $75.1 million for a CMV-22 Aircraft Maintenance Hangar and Airfield Improvements at Naval Station Norfolk
- $156.3 million for a Dry Dock Saltwater System for CVN-78 at Norfolk Naval Shipyard
- $42.8 million for a vehicle inspection and visitor control center at Quantico
- $29.8 million for a veterinary treatment facility replacement at Fort Belvoir
- $20.0 million for a consolidated maintenance complex at the Pentagon
- $8.6 million for force protection perimeter enhancements at the Pentagon
- $21.9 million for a Public Works Support Facility at the Pentagon
- $24.0 million for a fuel system maintenance dock at Joint Base Langley-Eustis
- $36.0 million for a Special Ops Forces Battalion Ops Facility at Humphreys Center at Fort Belvoir
- $93.5 million for a Navy Munitions Command facility recap at Yorktown Naval Weapons Station
- $5 million for an Electrical System upgrade for the National Geosptial Intelligence Agency campus in Springfield
Sexual Assault: The Committee adopted all resolutions removing the military chain of command from decisions involving prosecution of serious crimes. This includes the Military Justice Improvement Act, which is sponsored by Senator Gillibrand and cosponsored by Senator Kaine. The details of these proposals will be refined as the bill moves to the Senator floor.
Privatized Military Housing: Requires the services to ensure performance evaluations assess how installation commanders performed oversight and managed privatized military housing challenges.
Restores Military Housing Personnel: Provides $5 million to allow the Department of Defense (DOD) to hire back personnel cut by reductions enacted by the Committee over Senator Kaine’s objections in 2015 and 2016. This personnel will work on oversight of military housing, climate change impacts, and resiliency of our military bases.
Arsenal Optimization: Similar in scope and purpose to the Shipyard Infrastructure Optimization Plan, Senators Kaine and Blackburn drafted and secured passage of an amendment that requires the Army to outline the necessary investments and proposed timeline to modernize our nation’s arsenals. These arsenals are the critical manufacturing centers for components of nearly every DOD weapon, but many facilities date back to WWII.
Prohibition On Equipment from China: Prohibits the Department of Defense (DOD) from buying personal protective equipment manufactured in China, Russia, North Korea, or Iran, while giving DOD flexibility for overseas use, small purchases, and urgent needs.
Support for the Industrial Base: Provides an additional $25 million for Industrial Base Analysis and Sustainment Support fund for initiatives such as digital manufacturing, industrial skills training, and submarine construction workforce training pipeline.
Bien Hoa Dioxin Cleanup: Provides $15 million for cleanup of Bien Hoa Air Base in Vietnam. In 2019, Sen Kaine led the effort to include funding to USAID to clean up dioxin, a byproduct of Agent Orange, after visiting the formal inauguration of the remediation project at the airbase.