Through the Military Construction, Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies Appropriations Act, Congress allocates funding for the U.S. Department of Defense, the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs, and related agencies each year.  In developing this legislation, Senators and Representatives are afforded the opportunity to seek funding for key construction projects at selected military installations.  

Below is a list of the Pennsylvania projects for which I am seeking funding for in the fiscal 2010 appropriations cycle in this legislation.  It is important to note that each of these projects has been subjected to considerable scrutiny.  Generally speaking, Congress typically does not provide funding for military construction projects that are not included on the Department of Defense’s plan for construction projects (otherwise known as the Five Year Defense Plan, or FYDP).  Most, if not all, projects that are included in this bill have therefore been reviewed by the Department of Defense.
During this period of economic difficulties, I am mindful that American taxpayers expect that their elected representatives will avoid actions that will lead to waste, fraud, and abuse.  I take this obligation seriously.  I am also committed to working with my colleagues in the Pennsylvania delegation and on the Senate Appropriations Committee to make sure that only meritorious projects that are in the best interests of taxpayers are funded through this process.

In the interest of transparency and accountability, I am posting these projects on my website for your review.  I have also certified that neither I nor my immediate family has any personal financial interest in the any of the congressionally directed spending items that I have requested.  As the appropriations process for fiscal 2010 moves forward, I plan on posting more information on the status of these and other projects in Pennsylvania.  

The projects for which I am requesting congressionally-directed funding in this appropriations bill are as follows:

Service Component:          Air Force Reserve
Project Location:                 Pittsburgh Air Reserve Base, Pennsylvania
Amount:                                12,600,000
Project Name:           Visiting Quarters Phase I

Project Description:  If awarded, funding will provide for the demolition of two outdated Visiting Airmen Quarters and the construction of a new 3-story, 60-room Visiting Quarters facility to be used by the 911th Airlift Wing.  The existing facilities do not meet current space, fire protection, or force protection standards.  The new facility will provide safe, effective quarters which will help maintain the productivity and morale of visiting reservists and temporary duty assignment civilian employees.  The design of this facility has been completed.

Service Component:          Navy
Project Location:                Naval Support Activity Mechanicsburg, Pennsylvania
Amount:                                $5,710,000
Project Name:           North Gate Security Improvements

Project Description:  If awarded, this project would upgrade security at the North Gate located at Naval Support Activity (NSA) Mechanicsburg.  This construction will provide the proper Antiterrorism Force Protection measures required for current security and terrorist threats, including, among other things: the installation of swing gates; security fencing; a hardened guard house and vehicle inspector’s house; an intrusion detection system; closed circuit television; base-wide alarm duress system; site lighting; a truck inspection area; a hardened backup generator, permanent passive and active vehicle barriers; and elevated control lane islands with bullnose protection.  The design of this facility reached 35 percent completion in April 2009.  

Service Component:          Army National Guard
Project Location:                 Eastern ARNG Aviation Training Site (EAATS), Ft. Indiantown Gap, Pennsylvania
Amount:                             $38,395,000
Project Name:           Technical Training and Aircraft Maintenance Facility

Project Description:  If awarded, this project would construct a permanent structure to execute aviation related training as directed by the National Guard Bureau for enlisted aircraft maintenance qualifications and for maintaining airframes (UH-1, UH-60, CH-47, C-23 and LUH aircraft) in support of Aviator Qualification Training for all 54 States and Territories.  There is currently a shortage of 447,760 gross square feet of total required space, which restricts training and utilization.  With the new facility, EAATS would be able to meet current and forecasted National Guard Bureau requirements for aviation training.  The design of this facility began in November 2007.

Service Component:           Army National Guard
Project Location:                 Tobyhanna Army Depot, Tobyhanna, Pennsylvania
Amount:                                $1,430,000
Project Name:           Tobyhanna Armed Forces Reserve Center

Project Description: If awarded, funds will be used to design a 56,717 square-foot energy efficient facility for 270 United States Army Reserve and Pennsylvania Army National Guard soldiers.  The Joint Reserve Forces Reserve Component Facilities Board determined that this facility would be a prime candidate for joint use between the U.S. Army Reserve and Pennsylvania Army National Guard.  The facility this would replace lacks adequate space for training, administration, kitchen and supply areas, does not meet current codes, and frequently floods.      

Service Component:          Army National Guard
Project Location:                 Williamsport, Pennsylvania
Amount:                                $871,000
Project Name:           Williamsport Field Maintenance Shop

Project Description:  If awarded, requested funds would support the design of a facility to provide field level maintenance support to eleven units of the Pennsylvania Army National Guard.  The current facility is one-third the size authorized by the National Guard and has only three workbays, of which only one is large enough to fit Heavy Expanded Mobility Tactical Trucks (HEMTTs).  There is no overhead lift capability in the current facility.  

Service Component:          Army National Guard
Project Location:                Pittsburgh Air National Guard Base
Amount:                                $36,000,000
Project Name:           Combined Support Maintenance Shop

Project Description:       If awarded, requested funds would support the construction of a combined support maintenance shop that would allow the consolidation and closing of four inadequate maintenance facilities in the Pittsburgh area.   This new facility would accommodate 130,000 square feet of administrative and supply areas, nine general purpose, and twelve specialty maintenance work bays, including one for Stryker Brigade equipment.