Sen. Carper Addresses Defense Policy Bill - WBOC-TV 16, Delmarvas News Leader, FOX 21 -

Sen. Carper Addresses Defense Policy Bill

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Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.) Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.)

WASHINGTON (AP/WBOC) - The Senate has approved a massive defense policy bill that endorses President Barack Obama's expanded military campaign against Islamic State militants.

The vote was 89-11 on Friday. The measure now goes to the president for his signature.

The bill authorizes funds for basic military operations, from a 1 percent pay raise for the troops to the purchase of ships, aircraft and other war-fighting equipment.

The measure would authorize the training and equipping of moderate Syrian rebels battling the extremists, a mandate that lasts for two years. It also would provide $5 billion to train Iraqis to counter the militants who brutally rule large sections of Iraq and Syria.

The bill rebuffs Obama's push to close the federal prison at Guantanamo Bay, Cuba.

The bill also includes measures to protect the Delaware Air National Guard, and authorizes a national park for Delaware. The bill also includes the Federal Information Technology Acquisition Reform Act, co-sponsored by Sen. Tom Carper (D-Del.).

After the vote, Sen. Carper released a statement in support of the vote. The full statement is listed below.

“I am glad Congress did its job in one respect today, by passing the 2015 authorization for the Defense Department. This bill authorizes the critical programs of this vital agency, including the ongoing fight against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS). It also includes the Federal IT Acquisition Reform Act, or FITARA, which will help address many of the operational difficulties facing federal IT management today and greatly increase federal agencies' ability to reduce waste and increase agency accountability to the American taxpayers, and continues the promising work that has been done to right-size agency data centers.

“I am proud to have worked with the Delaware Congressional delegation to include provisions in the defense authorization that will allow the Delaware Air National Guard to continue its critical flying mission. This agreement will allow the Air Force to modernize its C-130 aircrafts in the most cost-effective and efficient way.

“Lastly, I am thrilled that along with the NDAA, the Senate passed legislation that included the authorization for Delaware's first national park. For more than a decade, I have been working with federal officials, state officials, community leaders and everyday citizens to establish a national park in Delaware. Now that we've done it, I look forward to the day when families from all across this country and the world will plan their vacations around the First State National Historical Park to learn how Delaware helped launch the most enduring experiment in democracy that the world has ever known – the United States of America.”

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