House Appropriations Committee approves defense bill for FY 2015

The House Appropriations Committee approved the fiscal year 2015 Defense Appropriations bill on Tuesday on a bipartisan voice vote.

The legislation funds military operations abroad, quality-of-life programs for the men and women of the Armed Forces and their families, and essential national security needs.

The bill provides $491 million in discretionary funding for FY 2015, which is an increase of $4.1 billion compared to the enacted level in 2014. The amount is $200 million above the president's request.

"This defense funding bill funds our national security in a way that is both fiscally responsible and reflective of the current and future threats to our nation," Rep. Hal Rogers (R-Ky.), the chairman of the House Appropriations Committee, said. "By prioritizing the security of the American people, the readiness of our military, and the health and well-being of our brave warfighters, this bipartisan legislation will help create a safer America."

The bill also includes $79.4 billion in Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO) for the ongoing war efforts abroad, which is the same level assumed in the House-passed National Defense Authorization Act and the president's budget request.

"This bipartisan bill provides the Department of Defense with much needed resources to modernize and maintain readiness at the levels which will allow the military and intelligence community to preserve its status as the most capable and superior armed forces in the world," Rep. Rodney Frelinghuysen (R-N.J.), the chairman of the House Defense Appropriations Subcommittee, said.