Tester Helps Secure Highest Pay Raise for Troops in Six Years

Senate Passes Annual Defense Bill with Several Tester Provisions

(U.S. Senate) – Senator Jon Tester today helped bolster national security, support Montana’s service members, and increase military readiness by securing key provisions in the 2017 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA).

The 2017 NDAA authorizes critical military equipment and resources while also providing a 2.1 percent pay raise for troops and their families. Congress has been working together to resolve differences between the House and Senate NDAA bills passed by each chamber in June. Several Tester provisions were included in the final bill.

“This bill authorizes the biggest pay raise for our troops in six years, and guarantees that Malmstrom’s assets and infrastructure will be strong and secure for decades to come,” said Tester, a member of the Defense Appropriations Subcommittee. “Our troops and their families have sacrificed so much for our country, and this bill does right by them.”

Tester secured the following provisions for Malmstrom in final the NDAA:

  • Provides for the replacement of Malmstrom’s Vietnam-era Huey helicopters by 2019. 
  • Authorizes a new Missile Maintenance Dispatch facility that will house and maintain the Huey replacement aircraft. Tester secured funding for this project in his 2017 Military Construction and Appropriations Bill, which was signed into law in September. 
  • Provides for the modernization of the ICBMs at Malmstrom.

Other Key Tester Provisions Included in the NDAA:

  • Legislation to protect National Guard members from repaying improper bonuses.
  • Provisions to ensure that service members who are unfairly discharged from the armed services after experiencing combat or sexual trauma resulting in Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder or Traumatic Brain Injuries are granted their proper due process.
  • Legislation that strengthens whistleblower protections and enhances safeguards for survivors of military sexual assault. Tester’s bill will better protect service members from retaliation after reporting instances of waste, fraud or abuse, and will protect military sexual assault survivors against retaliation for reporting they were sexually assaulted.

Tester voted in support of the 2017 NDAA, which passed the Senate 92-7.