Last week, U.S. Sen. Ted Budd, R-NC, voted to advance the FY 2024 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) to the Senate floor as it passed the Senate’s Armed Services Committee markups.

Service members and the DOD civilian workforce have a 5.2% pay raise in the bill, along with nearly $400 million for construction for North Carolina’s military installations.

The Act authorizes $886.3 billion in FY 2024 funding for national defense, including $844.3 billion for the Department of Defense (DOD) and $32.4 billion for national security programs within the Department of Energy (DOE).

“As a member of the Armed Services Committee, I know how much North Carolina contributes to America’s strength on the world stage,” Budd said in a press release. “The Old North State has a proud tradition of supporting our military, and it is my honor to vote for an NDAA that supports North Carolina’s servicemembers, their families, and our military installations. This year’s package also helps the United States confront the Chinese Communist Party, invests in American manufacturing, and secures critical supply chains.”

Military installations that will share in the $398.9 million include Fort Liberty (formerly known as Fort Bragg) – $165 million, Camp Lejeune – $110 million, Cherry Point – $105 million, $12 million to complete the Army Reserve Center in Asheville, and $2.2 million to complete planning and design of the North Carolina National Guard’s Aviation Support Facility in Salisbury.

The measure also expresses a Sense of the Senate that reductions to special operations force structure should not be considered as such cuts would have a negative impact on communities surrounding Fort Liberty and Camp Lejeune. Budd said special operations forces have a vital and increasing role in strategic competition in addition to conducting counterterrorism operations and responding to no-notice crises. 

 The Act also amends Section 150 of the FY2022 NDAA to include an accounting of remaining service life, upgrades, and other modifications made to each F-15 as part of a report required before divesting aircraft, including F-15E’s at Seymour Johnson Air Force Base.

The NDAA must still pass the full Senate. The U.S. House has its own version of the NDAA and, if passed, the two versions would be reconciled in a conference committee before the new bill is approved by each chamber and sent to President Joe Biden for a signature to become law.