Congressman Thornberry Praises Defense Budget; Positive Upgrades for the Area

AMARILLO - A significant change in the past few weeks in our nation's defense budget is bringing positive upgrades for the area especially for Bell and Pantex, that is according to Congressman Mac Thornberry.

He visited Bell Helicopter this morning. 

Congressman Thornberry said Pantex will see roughly a 6% to 7% increase in their budget for next year, $5 million to start designing a material staging facility, and replacing and accelerating the administrative support complex, which he said means about a third of the workers at Pantex will be able to have new office space once that is done. 

He said before the budget agreement, a week before last, spending for the military budget did not look too good. 

He shared it has been cut by 20% in the last eight years and with the cutbacks, he told us it has resulted in some negative outcomes for the military. 

"We have seen an alarming increase in accidents. Secretary Mattis has testified that we are falling behind in every domain of warfare-land, sea, air, outer space, and cyber. The world is not 20% safer it's been on the backs of our military men and women," said Congressman Thornberry.

Thornberry said the number of military accidents we have had has been so alarming.

He said last year, four times more service members were killed in training accidents and routine operations than in hostile actions.

Thornberry stated 21 were killed in hostile actions and we lost 80 in training accidents. 

He told us due to the budget agreement there will be about a 10% increase in the defense budget.

He said it will be the biggest pay raise they have had in eight years.

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