Millions of dollars on the horizon for New Mexico's defense industry

The Senate passed its version of the National Defense Authorization Act for 2020

By:  Justin Matthews

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. - The U.S. Senate passed the National Defense Authorization Act for fiscal year 2020 in an 86-8 vote; it is now being deliberated by the U.S. House of Representatives.

The Senate version of the bill gives more than $15 million to build a combat rescue helicopter simulator at the Kirtland Air Force Base, another $26 million for a space test program at Kirtland, and $20 million to build a climate-controlled storage and shipment facility at the Holloman Air Force Base. That's just to name a few.

"This bill makes major investments to ensure our armed forces are equipped with the most modern technology so we can stay ahead of our adversaries," said Senator Martin Heinrich.

"This bipartisan bill honors our service members with a well-deserved pay raise and bolsters essential defense programs across our state," Senator Tom Udall said.

 The funding will also help the Department of Energy's nuclear weapons programs at Sandia and Los Alamos National Laboratories, as well as the environmental cleanup programs where nuclear waste is shipped to and stored.