WASHINGTON—U.S. Senator Chris Murphy (D-Conn.) released the following statement regarding defense funding included in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2014, which passed the Senate 72-26 today:

This bill is a unconditional home run for Connecticut defense manufacturing and the hundreds of thousands of jobs it supports across our state,” said Murphy. “In a time when Washington gridlock stalls job-creating legislation almost daily, this omnibus will directly protect and grow jobs in our state. It took a lot of work to win these victories, and the payoff is big for Connecticut.  Until the very last minute, there was no funding for the new submarine enhancement program at Electric Boat, the Virginia Payload Module, but our delegation was able to secure last minute funding to restore this program. I also worked to correct a problem that has long been a thorn in the side of Sikorsky and has delayed the design and production of new rescue helicopters for the Air Force. Under prior appropriations bills, funding designated for the Air Force Combat Search and Rescue Helicopter had been utilized by the Pentagon for other purposes. We not only won major new dollars for this program but also included language in the bill that requires the Air Force to use this money only for the purchase of these critical helicopters.”

The defense funding in the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2014 includes:

  • A continued commitment to building two submarines per year, even amidst reports that mandatory cuts to Defense programs could scale back the Virginia class purchase schedule.
  • A $950 million increase in submarine procurement funding this fiscal year – unprecedented during a time of tight defense budgets.
  • $2.4 billion for advance procurement of future Virginia-class submarines.
  • $59 million dollars to support development engineering and design work on the Virginia Payload Module, secured at the last minute and critical to job protection and creation at Electric Boat.
  • $1.1 billion to fully fund development and design work on the Navy Ohio-class replacement ballistic missile submarine.
  • $334 million to support next generation Air Force Combat Search and Rescue Helicopters, with language to mandate the appropriated money be spent on new helicopters.
  • Full funding for 29 F135 engines for the Joint Strike Fighter program and important provision to ramp up production to 39 engines next year.