Tester Secures $182 Million for Montana Priorities in Defense Appropriations Bill

Funding to support university research and development, advancement of defense interests

In his role as the Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, U.S. Senator Jon Tester secured $181.7 million for Montana universities and businesses in the Fiscal Year 2023 (FY23) Senate Defense Appropriations Bill.

“Over the past year, I’m proud to have taken extensive input from military leaders and Montanans to craft a defense bill that utilizes made-in-Montana solutions to make responsible and targeted investments in our armed forces and national defense,” Tester said. “This legislation will keep America safe by investing in Malmstrom Air Force Base, giving our troops a well-earned pay raise, ensuring our servicemen and women are well-equipped with the most up-to-date technology, and shifting resources towards programs that’ll maintain our fighting edge over adversaries like China and Russia. Passing this budget on time will help us fight inflation, improve our national security, and help to create good-paying Montana jobs in the process.”

Tester’s bill prepares our military against our adversaries and ensures America retains its competitive edge over China while using made-in-Montana cutting-edge solutions and next-generation research. Montana will receive $181.7 million through this legislation, with $126.7 million going to Montana universities, and $55 million going to Montana small businesses to further national defense interests. Funding for Montana universities and businesses was secured through existing Department of Defense programs and a competitive application process.

Funding for Montana universities includes:

Montana State University: $53.7 million

  • $30 million for Quantum Technology Research
  • $10 million for Stretch Broken Carbon Fiber for Aircraft Structures
  • $5 million for MilTech Core Finding
  • $5 million for MilTech Support of Marine Corps Warfighting Lab
  • $3.7 million for TechLink

University of Montana: $51 million

  • $20 million for Language Training Centers
  • $15 million for the Mansfield Center’s Ethics and Public Affairs Program
  • $12 million for Pathfinder Cyber Initiatives
  • $4 million for Advanced Warfighter Physiology and Operations Readiness

Montana Technical University: $22 million

  • $12 million for Materials Processing Manufacturing Technology
  • $10 million for Materials Technology for Rare Earth Elements Processing

Funding for Montana businesses include:

Bozeman Area: $11.2 million

  • $7.2 million for “Reveal” to develop Farsight Software for Unmanned Aerial Systems
  • $4 million for “S2 Corporation” to develop Wideband Radio Frequency Sensors

Columbia Falls Area: $27 million

  • $7 million for “uAvionix” to develop Future Tactical Unmanned Aerial System comms systems
  • $20 million for “Nomad GCS/ BlueHalo” to develop Counter Small Unmanned Aerial System High Energy Lasers

Butte Area: $12 million

  • $12 million for “Universal Technical Resource Services (UTRS)” to continue Titanium Production

Missoula Area: $4.93 million

  • $4.93 million for “Maztech” to develop their Lethality Smart System

Chairman Tester’s legislation invests in our troops and our readiness by providing increases to the following important programs:

  • The bill fully funds the 4.6 percent pay raise for our troops, and adds $248 million for military family support programs, including: $85 million for the National Guard Youth Challenge, $50 million for Impact Aid, $25 million for the Beyond Yellow Ribbon program, and $20 million for Impact Aid for children with disabilities.
  • $921 million increase in Basic Allowance for housing to address price escalations.
  • $3 billion to improve readiness, including providing for increased training and maintenance activities.
  • $1.7 billion for 16 additional C-130J aircraft, to modernize 2 Air National Guard operational units.
  • $1.5 billion for the National Guard and Reserve Equipment Account.
  • $1.2 billion for medical research, including $130 million for peer-reviewed cancer research, and $130 million for peer-reviewed breast cancer research.
  • $805 million in special and incentive pays to help with recruitment and retention.
  • $800 million for basic research, including $400 million for the Defense University Research Instrumentation Program.
  • $277 million for various cyber and artificial intelligence initiatives to continue implementing recommendations from the National Security Commission on Artificial Intelligence.
  • $245.9 million to address PFAS contamination on military bases and in neighboring communities, as well as $81 million for aqueous film forming foam removal and disposal.
  • $1.4 billion to expand industrial base capacity and support the supply chain across multiple munitions programs in the face of increased requirements.
  • $4.7 billion to upgrade degrading and outdated infrastructure.

As the Chairman of the Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on Defense, Tester is responsible for crafting the annual Defense Appropriations bill which will provide $792.1 billion for the Department of Defense (DOD) and related activities in FY23. National priorities in the bill include: addressing inflationary costs, accelerating the development of resilient space capabilities, supply chain support, and infrastructure repairs and replacement.