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Congresswoman Madeleine Z. Bordallo

Representing the People of Guam

House Passes FY19 NDAA

May 24, 2018
Press Release
Includes Key Bordallo Provisions Important to Guam

Washington, D.C. – Congresswoman Madeleine Z. Bordallo today announced that the U.S. House of Representatives has passed H.R. 5515, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019, by a vote of 351 yeas to 66 noes. H.R. 5515 authorizes $639.1 billion for national defense programs, with an additional $69 billion for overseas contingency operations.

The U.S. House of Representatives agreed to Guam provisions sponsored by Congresswoman Bordallo. Importantly, Congresswoman Bordallo included a provision to hold the Navy and Department of Defense accountable to its commitment to the people of Guam to hold less land at the conclusion of the Marine realignment than it did when the program started. Congresswoman Bordallo codifies in federal law the military’s “net-negative” commitment and requires the Navy to make public the list of properties on Guam it expects to return to GovGuam as part of this commitment. She also provides for a formal mechanism for the Governor of Guam to petition for additional lands to be added to the list for the benefit of the people of Guam.

Congresswoman Bordallo also continues to address Guam’s labor challenges and included in H.R. 5515 a provision that would support Guam’s labor force through the H-2B visa program. Her provision extends the exemption for all of Guam from the national H-2B visa caps until 2020. She also provides for flexibility for health care workers to be admitted under the H-2B visa program. Furthermore, her provision permits H-2B workers admitted to Guam to reenter as a returning worker without counting against the national caps.

The Congresswoman further sponsored provisions that would require the Navy to perform scheduled repairs and maintenance of naval vessels without a homeport in shipyards located in the United States or Guam. H.R. 5515 would also prohibit the Navy from developing the former Guam Ship Repair Facility (SRF) for use other than depot-level ship maintenance.

The NDAA also provides $377.2 million for military construction projects on Guam to support the ongoing progress on the Marine realignment and the hardening of military facilities on Guam. (Full table below)

“This is a good bill that supports our men and women in uniform and their families, and includes provisions I included that are important to Guam. I am pleased that the House agreed to include my provision to hold the military accountable to its commitment to hold less land on Guam when the Marine realignment is completed than it did when this program began. It is important for this process to be transparent, and my provision ensures that the list of lands the Navy expects to return to GovGuam is available to the public. I further provide for a path for more lands to be returned by giving the Governor of Guam a formal process to petition to include additional lands on this list.

“Additionally, I continue working to provide federal relief to Guam’s labor challenges. This year’s NDAA builds on the successes we had last year and would extend the exemption from the national H-2B visa caps provided to our entire island until 2020. The bill further supports Guam’s health care industry by providing flexibility for health care workers to be admitted through the H-2B program for Guam. The H-2B program will continue to help fund the training of local workers on Guam to expand our organic workforce and bring jobs to the people of Guam.

“This bill reaffirms Congress’ support for Guam and it will help to rebuild readiness of our military services at home and around the world. I look forward to working with the Senate during conference to maintain the provisions important to our island and having them enacted to law this year.”

Fiscal Year 2019 Military Construction Authorization for Guam

Project

          Cost

 

     ACE Gym & Dining

27,910,000

 

     Earth Covered Magazines

52,270,000

 

     Machine Gun Range

70,000,000

 

     Ordnance Ops

22,020,000

 

     Unaccompanied Enlisted Housing

36,170,000

 

     X-Ray Wharf Improvements (Berth 2)

75,600,000

 

     Hayman Munitions Storage Igloos MSA 2

9,800,000

 

     Replace Andersen Housing Phase III

83,441,000

 

Guam Total

$   377,211,000