FY19 NDAA signed into law, scoring major wins for island community ‘inside and outside the fence’

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President Donald Trump (file photo)

Guam – Good news from New York early this morning as President Trump signed the NDAA for fiscal 2019 into law. The bill, negotiated yearly, outlines America’s appropriations for its military enterprises worldwide.

The President arrived at Fort Drum in upstate New York this morning with pen in hand, ready to sign off on the John S. McCain National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2019. A little after 2:30 PM on Monday — or 4:30 AM today for those of us here — the NDAA became law.

Guam, where a third of its acreage is federally owned, will receive $377 million dollars towards its military projects this fiscal year. Joint Region Marianas will also receive another $70 million the following year for the construction of its live fire machine gun range.

Guam Congresswoman Madeleine Bordallo, who was named a House negotiator for the bill, managed to secure several civilian-friendly provisions as well. One such provision gives the governor of Guam control over the island’s H2B determination process. Another provision solidifies in federal law DoD’s net-negative initiative — their commitment to hold less land on Guam than when the military buildup started.

In a statement from the her office, Bordallo says:

“I look forward to this law providing our servicemembers with the resources they need to carry out their mission. I am also confident that the provisions I secured for Guam will help to strengthen our security and grow our economy in a way that is responsible and good for our island.”