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House Passes Defense Bill with Sorensen Priorities for Rock Island Arsenal

Congressman Eric Sorensen (IL-17) voted to pass a bipartisan defense spending bill that includes historic wins to support the Rock Island Arsenal and strengthens national security. The package Sorensen helped pass also includes a 5.2 percent pay raise for service members – the largest in over two decades. 

 

“Our neighbors and their families who put their lives on the line to keep our communities safe deserve a well-earned pay raise,” said Sorensen. “Furthermore, these critical investments coming to Western Illinois from this bill ensure that workers at the Rock Island Arsenal will have the tools they need to be successful. I am honored to fight for our local heroes in Washington and I look forward to seeing the positive impacts of this legislation on our communities.” 

 

Priorities Sorensen helped deliver for families in Illinois’ 17th Congressional District include: 

 

  • Ensuring Competitiveness and Jobs for the Rock Island Arsenal: Included in the package is $120 million for the Arsenal Sustainment Initiative. This funding directly invests in the Army’s three manufacturing arsenals, one of which is the Rock Island Arsenal, to support their vital manufacturing work. This funding ensures the Rock Island Arsenal stays sustainable for generations to come. 

  • Strengthening Manufacturing Jobs in Western Illinois: The package includes $120 million for the Shop Equipment Contact Maintenance Vehicle (Next Generation HMMVVV) program, which supports the development of the Next Generation Shop Equipment Contact Maintenance (NG SECM). The NG SECM provides immediate field level maintenance to damaged vehicles. The work on the NG SECM will take place at the Joint Manufacturing and Technology Center on the Rock Island Arsenal. Also included is $12.5 million to develop tools to support continued updates to the Abrams Tank using additive manufacturing at Rock Island’s Advanced Manufacturing Center of Excellence. Additionally, $5 million in funding will support the continued development of soft recoil technology that enables heavier artillery to be placed on lighter vehicles. The work will be supported by workers on the Rock Island Arsenal. 

  • Advancing Research and Development: $5 million will support ongoing ballistics technology research and development being conducted by the Quad City Manufacturing Lab in partnership with the Rock Island Arsenal. This vital research focuses on the critical need to develop technologies that lead to better warfighter protection with lightweight vehicle armor.  

  • Providing the Rock Island Arsenal with Tools to Sustain More Jobs: $5 million in the defense package will support the development of a prototype online search tool that would allow authorized users to search for space available at several Army installations. The Rock Island Arsenal is a member of the pilot program for this tool. The tool will ensure space available on the Arsenal is used efficiently. 

  • Supporting Technologies to Increase Efficiency: $2.5 million will support the development of new equipment with non-destructive sensors to assess infrastructure conditions. Rapidly assessing infrastructure helps the Department of Defense understand critical infrastructure needs and provides intel as to the level of repair necessary to support missions. Part of the funded work will take place at the Joint Manufacturing Technology Center on the Rock Island Arsenal. 

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