$300 million for military realignment construction projects pass - KUAM.com-KUAM News: On Air. Online. On Demand.

$300 million for military realignment construction projects passed

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The US House of Representatives today passed the conference agreement of H-R 2810, the 2018 National Defense Authorization Act. The agreement authorizes more than $300 million for military realignment construction projects.

Ensuring the safety of the nation, the vote was 356 in favor and 70 opposed...

The House voting on the fiscal year 2018 NDAA to authorize 692.1 billion for DoD and defense related programs along with an additional $65.7 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations funds for war operations and other anti-terror activities.

Here's the breakdown for the territory:

$75.2 million for an aircraft maintenance hangar, $66.7 million for a corrosion control hangar, $49.4 million for Marine Aviation Logistics Squadron facilities, $37.1 for Navy-commercial tie-in hardening, more than $56 million for a water well field, $40 million to replace Anderson housing, $23.9 million to a construct truck load and unload facility, and a reserve medical training facility priced at $5.2 million.

That's more than $354.6 million in funding for the build-up.

The agreement further provides the U.S. Customs and Immigration Services with flexibility to administer the H-2B visa program on Guam, providing up to 4,000 H-2B temporary workers per year.

Congresswoman Madeleine Bordallo discussed the issue with House Armed Services Chairman Mac Thornberry.

Bordallo stated, “Conference agreement includes a provision to remedy the H2B visa denial issue, particularly affecting construction projects on Guam by granting USCIS to approve temporary construction work directly connected to or associated with the military realignment occurring on Guam through 2023.”

Tornberry adds “I understand that more is needed as Guam remains a strategic fixture in ensuring peace and stability in the Indo-Asia Pacific region.”

Bordallo states while this is not the full solution she introduced in the House bill, it is a step in the right direction and overcomes strong opposition by the Senate and the Trump Administration to providing relief for non-DoD construction projects. Bordallo adding that she supports Governor Calvo's efforts and hope he is successful in getting the Trump Administration to administratively reverse USCIS's H-2B visa denials.

The NDAA heads to the Senate for discussion and a vote before it makes its way to the President.

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