Sarbanes Supports Funding for Maryland Priorities in Defense Bill
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Congressman John Sarbanes (D-Md.) today voted to pass important federal funding for Maryland’s priorities in the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2022 (NDAA).
“This legislation honors our obligation to servicemembers and their families in Maryland and across the country. It provides a pay raise for our servicemembers and makes critical investments that will modernize our infrastructure and continue to support good-paying jobs – including those at the Coast Guard Yard.
“It includes my legislation to allow federal firefighters like those at the U.S. Naval Academy and Fort Meade to trade shifts without losing pay or taking leave, enabling them to do their job safely and effectively. It also incorporates legislation I cosponsored to implement stormwater best management practices to reduce flooding on and around military bases.
“The House adopted my amendment to establish requirements and incentives to limit the use of PFAS. PFAS contamination is often found around military bases, and it is linked with adverse effects on public health, the environment and the Chesapzeake Bay.
“I am pleased that this bill secures crucial benefits and protections while also making our nation safer and stronger.”
See below for key priorities from the bill.
- Provides a 2.7% pay raise for service members.
- Establishes a $15 minimum wage for covered service and construction contracts.
- Increases access to childcare and health care.
U.S. Coast Guard
- Allocates $550 million to the U.S. Coast Guard.
- Includes $175 million for critical investments in the Coast Guard Yard in Baltimore, Maryland, including improvements to the dock, drydock, capital equipment and other dredging necessary.
Firefighter Flexibility Act
- Includes Congressman Sarbanes’ bill that corrects a discrepancy between federal firefighters and their counterparts at the state, local and municipal levels and ensures federal firefighters who trade shifts across multiple pay periods are not subject to pay decreases or to the triggering of overtime pay requirements.
PFAS Action Act
- Requires the Department of Defense to use enforceable state standards for clean-up of PFAS contamination when they are more strict than federal regulations.
- Includes Congressman Sarbanes’ amendment to require PFAS manufacturers to submit reference standards to EPA, which will help EPA better identify PFAS in our environment and protect public health.
- Also includes an amendment Congressman Sarbanes cosponsored to set a national, health-protective drinking water standard for PFAS.
EMBRACE Stormwater Management Act
- Includes legislation Congressman Sarbanes cosponsored to implement stormwater best management practices to reduce flooding on and around military bases.
- Includes an amendment Congressman Sarbanes cosponsored to extend the lobbying ban for executive branch officials from one year to two years.