Funding approved for Wright-Patterson AFB center

CINCINNATI — U.S. Senator Rob Portman (R-OH) has announced that the Senate’s FY 2019 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), approved this week by the Senate Armed Services Committee, includes $116 million in funding to upgrade the National Air and Space Intelligence Center (NASIC), located at the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base.

Portman had urged the committee’s leadership to include the funding. NASIC’s main campus facilities are overcrowded and require modernization to meet today’s missions. With significant total force growth that has outpaced their facility growth, NASIC has been forced to utilize antiquated World War II-era facilities on base and temporary structures. This investment in NASIC infrastructure will provide the command with much needed secure spaces that meet the demands of the growing workforce and the associated information technology requirements of modern facilities.

“I am pleased the Senate’s NDAA supports the mission of NASIC and Wright-Patt by providing the funding they need to upgrade their facilities and continue their important work. I believe it will make a difference to our Airmen and Air Force Civilians at Wright-Patt and to our troops around the world who rely on NASIC for accurate and timely intelligence,” Portman said.

“Last year, I had the opportunity to visit Wright-Patterson Air Force Base and meet with the men and women serving in the National Air and Space Intelligence Center. I saw firsthand NASIC’s most recent military construction project for their Foreign Military Exploitation mission, as well as some of the groundbreaking analysis they are doing to keep our skies and our country safe from foreign threats. However, I also saw many of our intelligence professionals performing highly technical, 21st century work in World War II era facilities. The Pentagon’s latest National Defense Strategy highlights the harsh realities of the threats we face around the world and the steps we must take to confront them. NASIC will continue to play an critical role in helping the leadership of our country understand foreign threats to U.S. air and space operations.”

Portman has led efforts to help secure this funding, including urging the chairman and ranking member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. Last year, Portman’s amendments to support jobs and the important research mission at Wright-Patterson Air Force Base’s Air Force Research Lab were signed into law as part of the NDAA. This legislation is critical to our national security and to maintaining our military’s technological edge. In May 2017, the Senate passed Portman and Senator Joe Donnelly’s (D-IN) resolution honoring the cutting-edge work of Department of Defense (DoD) laboratories, such as the Air Force Research Lab at Wright-Patt. Portman visited NASIC and other units at Wright-Patt in March and August 2017.