Defense bill before Bush has $413M for Hawaii
Congress sent a defense spending bill to President Bush on Thursday that includes $413 million dollars for Hawaii-based programs.
The largest single appropriation for Hawaii, of $27 million, goes to train airmen to fly and maintain new C-17 cargo planes to be based at Oahu's Hickam Air Force Base next year. The figure includes funds to support Alaska-based C-17s.
Close to $25 million will fund the Army's Pacific Command communications, computer and intelligence systems.
The Maui Space Surveillance System satellite tracking facility on the summit of Haleakala will get $22 million.
Sen. Daniel Inouye, D-Hawaii, said the Hawaii-related programs are important, given the role the state plays in defending the nation.
"The Hawaii-related initiatives will further develop the cutting-edge technology needed by the American men and women who put themselves in harm's way," Inouye said.
The $453 billion national defense spending bill also channels $29 billion in hurricane aid to the Gulf Coast and $50 billion more to military action in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Bush applauded Congress' passage of the troop-funding bill and said he looks forward to signing it.
"This funding will help us continue to hunt down the terrorists, pursue our strategy for victory in Iraq and make America more secure," he said in a statement.