Washington, D.C.- U.S. Senators Arlen Specter, a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, and Bob Casey, the junior senator from Pennsylvania, announced today that the full U.S. Senate has approved federal funding for several defense-related projects in Pennsylvania as contained in the Fiscal Year 2008 Defense Appropriations bill. The bill was passed by the Senate by a voice vote late Wednesday evening.
“I am pleased that my colleagues have recognized the valuable contribution these projects will make to our nation’s defense,” said Specter. “Pennsylvania is a top competitor for defense projects that create jobs and strengthen our economy and these funds will go far in supporting the brave men and women who serve our country.”
“I am grateful the Senate approved initiatives designed to strengthen our national defense and support our troops,” said Casey. “These projects will help protect and equip our men and women in uniform while helping to create jobs in Pennsylvania.”
The bill must now be approved by the full Congress and the President of the United States before funding is final.
Funding has been approved for the following Pennsylvania defense projects:
$6.5 million for Letterkenny Army Depot (LEAD) in Franklin County to develop and test a safe recover reuse and recycle technology to demilitarize munitions in an environmentally friendly manner. LEAD, the largest employer in Franklin County, would use the funding to develop state-of-the-art procedures and demilitarize the munitions center's concentration of aging, multiple launched rocket systems. Currently, the only method available to do this is via open burn/open detonation.
$5 million for the Pennsylvania National Guard’s Northeast Counter Drug Training Center in Lebanon County to provide training for DoD personnel, military units, local, state and federal law enforcement agencies and community anti-drug coalitions.
$4 million for the Charles E. Kelly Commissary Relocation Project in Allegheny County to allow local and federal agencies to begin development of a new commissary and post exchange. Under the Base Realignment and Closure law, the commissary currently located at the Charles E. Kelly Support Facility in Oakdale, Pennsylvania can remain open and will be included in the reuse plan from the Local Redevelopment Authority (LRA). Over 90,000 military retirees, active-duty, National Guard and reserve troops are eligible to use the commissary with over 150,000 total patrons in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio and Western Maryland. The distance to the closest commissary facility, located in Carlisle, PA, is over 400 miles roundtrip.
$5 million for Alcoa in Westmoreland County to enhance tactical vehicles by using new methods and materials to increase durability and survivability while reducing weight.
$5 million for Rohm and Haas in Philadelphia County to produce skin decontamination kits which combat chemical agents without harming the soldier.
$4 million for Piasecki Aircraft in Delaware County to continue development and testing of the Vectored Thrust Ducted Propeller helicopter technology which has the potential to increase the craft’s speed, range and survivability.
$4 million for Air Products in Lehigh County to provide oxygen-generating systems which are less expensive, more compact, easier to deploy and more reliable than traditional systems.
$3 million for JLG in Fulton County to procure the All Terrain Lifter Army System II which will serve as the army’s next generation material handlers.
$3 million for SAP in Delaware County to provide the Army with software solutions which will reduce inventories and costs while gaining greater asset visibility and distribution predictability and reliability.
$3 million for Bliley Technologies in Erie County to provide precise GPS capabilities to soldiers serving in environments where GPS is denied, such as canyons, building interiors, underground, and under heavy forestation.
$3 million for Medico Industries, Inc. in Luzerne County for technological improvements to reduce the time it takes to deliver new and improved ammunition to the soldier in the field.
$2.5 million for Analytical Graphics in Chester County to provide the Air Force with enhanced situational awareness.
$2 million for Night Vision in Lehigh County to provide MX-2A Miniature Remote Thermal Imagers which have increased power, structural integrity and lower weight to the Army.
$2 million for Morgan Advanced Materials & Technology in Elk and Potter Counties for the development of improved body armor.
$2 million for Impact Technologies in Centre County to develop intelligent ground support system enhancements to enable cost effective avionic and flight control system health management.
$1.5 million for the Pittsburgh Tissue Engineering Institute in Allegheny County to develop regenerative techniques to safely and efficiently treat combat-sustained injuries.
$1 million for Plextronics in Allegheny County to provide new capabilities and technology for flexible electronics. Flexible display technology will allow soldiers to receive information in real time on robust, flexible maps and displays that can be conformed in a variety of ways while reducing the weight and power requirements.
$1 million for C&D Technologies in Montgomery County to provide a more powerful, durable, lightweight, rapidly rechargeable vehicle battery which can operate in a wide range of temperatures.