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STATEMENT: Congressman Denny Heck on Possible Diversion of Joint Base Lewis-McChord Funds to Pay for Proposed Border Wall

Pentagon Report Shows Military Construction Programs in Washington State Are Being Targeted, Harming Readiness

This press release was provided by the Office of Congressman Denny Heck.

Today the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) confirmed that four military projects in Washington state could be cut in order to fund a border wall.

The projects include (1) a refueling facility needed for training, (2) replacement facilities for the Northwestern Joint Regional Correctional Facility (NWJRCF), (3) a fire station required by the Army Corp of Engineers, and (4) a Tactical Equipment Maintenance Facility at Yakima Training Center.

“Today I received from the Pentagon a list of military projects that may lose funding in order to pay for President Trump’s border wall. If the President gets his way, vital military programs right here at home will be on the chopping block.”

On the NWJRCF, Heck continued: 

“I’ve been to the current correctional facility, which is over six decades old, and seen firsthand how desperately it needs to be updated.

“Just last year, the DoD stated that the proposed fueling station at JBLM was vital to the training and readiness of Army helicopter pilots yet the President is now threatening to take away the funding needed to complete it. 

“This is why I voted against the President’s emergency declaration. He is diverting funds from real operational priorities in order to build an unneeded wall that he couldn’t convince Congress to authorize. The readiness and the wellbeing of our armed forces is non-negotiable.”

The U.S. House of Representatives voted on February 26th to overturn President Trump’s emergency declaration, and the Senate followed suit on March 14th. President Trump vetoed that measure on March 15th.

The diversion of funds for the emergency declaration is also expected to take about $2.5 billion from the National Guard’s drug interdiction efforts.

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