Mikulski Advances Fight To Put Funds In Federal Checkbook For Maryland Defense Priorities

May 22, 2012

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senator Barbara A. Mikulski (D-Md.), a senior member of the Senate Appropriations Committee, announced the fiscal year 2013 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs funding bill includes $436 million for construction projects on military bases in Maryland. The bill, which passed the full committee this morning, will now move to the Senate floor for a vote, which has not yet been scheduled.  

"I told Maryland's military leaders I would fight for this funding. My promises made are promises kept," Senator Mikulski said. "A stronger America begins at home. That's why I fight every year to make sure our military has the tools it needs to keep us safe. I will keep fighting to make sure Maryland has the funding it needs in the federal checkbook to support our military families and bases."  

The funding bill includes $69 million to continue base access improvements and medical facility upgrades for the Walter Reed National Medical Center in Bethesda, Maryland . Senator Mikulski specifically requested this funding in the federal checkbook to ensure that Walter Reed remains the nation's largest and most renowned military medical centers.  This funding also includes increased campus accessibility for Wounded Warriors so that they can independently traverse from their barracks to the Fischer Houses, Navy Lodge and the recreation field on the base.   

"Part of a soldier's recovery and rehabilitation includes being independent to go where you want, when you want," Senator Mikulski said. "Being able to get around this medical facility on your own is a big step towards recovering your confidence and dignity."  

Senator Mikulski remains committed to protecting the American soldier both on and off the battlefield which is why she specifically requested and secured $19 million in funding to continue upgrading the Infectious Disease Research Institute at Fort Detrick, Maryland.  Maryland remains the preeminent infectious disease research location in the world protecting millions of soldiers deployed overseas.  

The funding bill also includes the following funding to support several key projects at Maryland's military bases:  

Aberdeen Proving Ground:  

- $21 million for a new Army Reserve Center this new 500-member training facility will  replace two old, overcrowded  buildings (currently separated on two bases) to ensure our Maryland Army Reserve soldiers have the appropriate facilities to train and meet their critical missions.  

Annapolis Naval Academy  

- $66.5 million to replace the existing interconnected buildings at Naval Health Clinic Annapolis, which are physically and functionally obsolete, in order to provide primary care and specialty healthcare to Naval Academy Midshipman, assigned active-duty, retirees and their families.  

Baltimore  

- $10 million to update the 1st Sargent Adam S. Brandt United States Army Reserve Center (USARC). This project will renovate a 400-member training facility and provide for additional administrative and education areas for nine Army Reserve units.  

Bethesda Naval Hospital  

- $35.6 million for installation-wide utility upgrades to improve the capacity of the power distribution infrastructure. This project is necessary to support sufficient power to Bethesda Naval Support Activity. It demolishes and reconstructs three existing cooling towers and constructs a fourth cooling tower cell to accommodate future loads.  

- $26.6 million for temporary medical facilities to facilitate ongoing operates at Water Reed National Military Medical Center (WRNMMC) as it works to implement new construction outlined in the 2010 Joint Task Force and National Naval Medical Center WRNMMC Medical Facilities Comprehensive Master Plan. To implement this plan, several existing occupied buildings must be demolished to make room for a previously funded building project.  

- $7 million to implement base installation access plan by constructing various transportation improvements, including paving and signage at various intersections across campus noted as deficiencies in the 2011 Naval Station Activity Bethesda Traffic Study.  

Fort Detrick  

- $19 million for the next phase of new the U.S. Army Medical Research Institute of Infectious Disease. This facility is the cornerstone of our military's effort to stay one step ahead of potential threats to our troops from biological agents. The more modern facility will ensure the engineers and scientists at Fort Detrick have the tools to complete their mission. They will also ensure that they carry out their work in facilities that have the most modern safety and security features.  

Fort Meade

- $225.5 million for a National Security Agency (NSA) High Performance Computer Center. This project is the second increment of the High Performance Computing Center building project that will complete will provide state-of-the-art computing capability at NSA.  

- $25 million for National Security Agency (NSA) recapitalize building. This represents the initiation of a long term development plan to replace existing facilities and infrastructure to support the intense technological requirements of evolving missions. This recapitalization project begins to address a growing shortfall of state of the art workspace for some the National Security Agency's most critical mission elements.