Press Releases

Congressman Adam Smith (D-Wash.) voted in support of H.R. 2647, the fiscal year 2010 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), which authorizes appropriations for essential U.S. national security efforts. As chairman of the Terrorism, Unconventional Threats and Capabilities Subcommittee, Smith also played a primary role in crafting this legislation. The bill was reported out of the House Armed Services Committee by a vote of 61-0.

“This is a critically important bill, which ensures our brave men and women in harms way have the resources they need,” said Congressman Adam Smith. “It supports our troops and their families, ensures our military readiness, and focuses on our strategy in Afghanistan and Pakistan. This bill is vitally important to our national security and I am proud of the support it provides to our troops and their efforts to keep us safe.”

The bill authorizes appropriations for fiscal year 2010 military activities including the Department of Defense, the national security programs of the Department of Energy (DoE), military construction projects, and other defense and military personnel activities related to U.S. national security efforts.

Congressman Smith played a central role in shaping the portion of NDAA which relates to his work as Chair of the Terrorism, Unconventional Threats and Capabilities Subcommittee. This includes some of the Defense Department’s most important challenges:  the fight against violent extremists, their allies and their ideology; development and deployment of innovative technology in new battlefields; and defending the homeland from catastrophic unconventional attacks.

Some of the key provisions within Smith jurisdiction include:

  • Authorization of $8.958 billion for Special Operations Command, including $308.4 million to cover all unfunded requirements;
  • Authorization of up to $30 million, an increase of $10 million over the President’s budget request, to improve the capacity and capabilities of the NATO Special Operations Coordination Center;
  • Directs the Secretary of Defense to submit a report on the planning for and execution of public diplomacy, including a description of all of the activities, metrics, and an analysis of how these activities are coordinated.
  • Directs the Secretary of Defense to have the military departments and defense agencies establish a process for addressing hardware or software vulnerabilities to defense IT systems identified during an information assurance vulnerability assessment;
  • Authorizes the Secretary to conduct a pilot demonstration of an alternative acquisition process for rapidly acquiring information technology capabilities;
  • Encourages the Department to continue to invest in developing and demonstrating core technologies for hybrid air vehicles, including closer coordination and cooperation with the Air Force and Transportation Command.
The bill must be approved by the Full House of Representatives and the Senate before the President can sign it into law.

Congressman Adam Smith made the following statement praising the inclusion of a provision in the Family Smoking Prevention and Tobacco Control Act to provide relief for military surviving spouses. The bill passed the House today by a vote of 307-97 and is expected to be signed into law by the President.

Congressman Smith supported legislation today that grants the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) the authority to regulate the advertising, marketing, and manufacturing of tobacco products. Tobacco related deaths are the leading cause of preventable death in America.

The bill also includes a provision to increase monthly payments made to surviving military spouses under the Special Survivor Indemnity Allowance (SSIA). Specifically, the bill will increase SSIA payments to $150 per month in Fiscal Year (FY) 2014, $200 per month in FY2015, $275 per month in FY2016, and $310 per month in FY2017. SSIA was first established to provide relief to surviving spouses who are subject to the mandatory deduction of Dependency and Indemnity Compensation (DIC) from Survivor Benefit Program (SBP) annuities.

"While I will continue to work towards the full repeal of the mandatory SBP-DIC offset, and am a cosponsor of legislation that would do just that, this is a positive step to provide relief to surviving spouses of those who served in the Armed Forces," Smith said

Congressman Adam Smith (D-WA) recently introduced legislation in the House of Representatives to improve America’s freight and transportation infrastructure to ensure that it remains competitive and supportive of commerce and economic growth.                              

“As our economy continues to grow and evolve, we must ensure that our country’s infrastructure expands and adapts to meet our economy’s growing needs,” said Congressman Adam Smith. “With commerce and trade expected to become an even greater percentage of our economy, the demand placed on our national infrastructure will only continue to grow. There is a clear demand that requires us to respond to these challenges and this bill will begin to move us in the right direction.”

The National Freight Mobility Infrastructure Act, H.R. 2707, enables our nation to make critical improvements to the U.S. freight mobility network by providing much-needed federal support to vital surface transportation infrastructure projects.  
This legislation generates revenue through a minimal one-percent user fee on the cost of multimodal surface freight transport.  In turn, the funds raised are reinvested back into improving the freight network, including both highways and railways, through a national competitive grant program at the Department of Transportation.

 H.R. 2707 increases the efficiency of freight movement, reduces congestion and delays, assists manufacturing and on-demand product distribution, lessens our nation’s environmental impact, and strengthens our economy.  

 “As Congress takes up surface transportation legislation this year,” Smith added, “I sincerely hope to see federal policy increasingly focus on the freight mobility infrastructure needs that will fuel our businesses and economy for years to come.”

 

Congressman Adam Smith made the following statement applauding the passage of the Pakistan Enduring Assistance and Cooperation Enhancement Act of 2009, which passed the House today by a vote of 234-185.  

“Pakistan is an ally and essential strategic partner in our fight against violent extremism as well as our goals for preventing narcotics trafficking and the proliferation of nuclear weapons. Yet, Pakistan faces tremendous internal and external destabilizing pressures and needs our assistance. That is why I am pleased to support legislation that provides the critical resources necessary to bolster the Pakistani government and develop a more constructive, accountable relationship with the United States.”

“This bill provides funding and support to train the Pakistani military in the crucial counterinsurgency capabilities needed to defeat violent extremist groups within or near its borders. It also provides funding to support economic, social and democratic development by strengthening democratic institutions, reinforcing the judicial system, developing infrastructure, spurring jobs creation, expanding public education and providing aid to refugees. This funding is vital to undermine the efforts of violent extremists, strengthen domestic support for the Pakistani government and move the country toward stability. Additionally, the legislation includes accountability provisions to ensure that Pakistan is using our security assistance in a manner consistent with U.S. national security interests.

“Further, the House-passed bill includes provisions from legislation that I have advocated for to establish Reconstruction Opportunity Zones (ROZs) in Afghanistan and Pakistan. These ROZs, where non-trade-sensitive exports would be permitted to enter the U.S. duty-free, will deter al-Qaeda and Taliban recruitment efforts by offering economic alternatives to joining the insurgency.  

“President Zadari cannot win the battle against violent extremism through military means alone. This is an essential approach that strikes a balance between security and development assistance to ensure that the Pakistani government has the tools, knowledge and funding necessary to push back recent advancements by violent extremists and provide a strong, effective government for the Pakistani people.

 
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Congressman Adam Smith (WA-09) made the following statement after his vote in favor of H.R. 2410, the Foreign Relations Authorization Act for Fiscal Years 2010 and 2011:

“In recent years U.S. foreign policy has neglected two of our country’s greatest strengths - diplomacy and development. The Foreign Affairs Authorization bill passed by the House today reinvigorates our efforts and promotes a more balanced U.S. foreign policy that will bolster our national security efforts and help to restore American’s image abroad.

“H.R. 2410 enhances our diplomacy and development efforts by authorizing the hiring of 1,500 new Foreign Service officers, an additional 700 hires at the U.S. Agency for International Development and by doubling the number of Peace Corps volunteers. The bill also supports peacekeeping efforts in Darfur, strengthens arms control and nonproliferation capabilities, improves oversight of U.S. security assistance and funds a variety of other vitally important foreign affairs programs.

“As Chair of the House Armed Services subcommittee on Terrorism, Unconventional Threats and Capabilities and a former member of the Foreign Affairs Committee, I understand that America cannot rely on the military alone to achieve our foreign policy objectives.  Robust diplomacy and effective development play a critical role in our national security strategy. For far too long these soft power tools have been underutilized and overlooked and I am pleased to see a renewed focus on a smarter, more comprehensive approach to our national security by elevating diplomacy and development.”