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PASSED THE SENATE: Annual Defense Bill with Key Hassan-Backed Provisions

WASHINGTON – The U.S. Senate passed the bipartisan National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) for Fiscal Year 2024, which includes key national security provisions that Senator Maggie Hassan (D-NH) secured and supported. The bill includes a 5.2 percent pay raise for U.S. service members and specifically includes a bipartisan measure that Senator Hassan authored to prepare for emerging national security threats posed by quantum technology.

“While we can never fully repay the debt of gratitude that our country owes our service members, we must do everything that we can to support them and their mission to protect our national security,” said Senator Hassan. “I am glad that we came together on a strong bipartisan basis in the Senate to move forward our annual defense bill. Among many important measures, it has a pay raise for service members, invests in New Hampshire’s military institutions, targets fentanyl trafficking, and more. This bipartisan legislation will help keep our country safe, secure, and free.”

“In addition, I am pleased that this year’s annual defense bill includes my bipartisan amendment that strengthens our national security by preparing for threats posed by quantum technology,” said Senator Hassan. “Quantum technology is an emerging field that has serious implications for national security, including the potential for the Chinese government and other adversaries to use it to decode encrypted messages and data. Especially as our adversaries invest heavily in quantum science, federal agencies must work together and with the private sector to respond to these national security threats and take advantage of opportunities presented by quantum computing.”

Key measures that Senator Hassan championed that are included in the NDAA:

  • Senator Hassan and Senator John Thune (R-SD)’s bipartisan amendment to prepare for national security threats posed by emerging quantum technology. The measure will:
    1. Expand existing public-private talent exchange programs in the Defense Department to include private sector entities working on quantum technology research & applications
    2. Authorize a fellowship program in the Defense Department for students focusing on quantum information science and technology research
    3. Build on the National Quantum Initiative by incorporating Defense Department and intelligence community research efforts within the broader program, which works to strengthen quantum science activities across government, academia, and the business community
  • Multiple bipartisan bills that Senator Hassan cosponsored and supported to target fentanyl trafficking and strengthen border security, including:
    1. The END Fentanyl Act to target fentanyl trafficking at the border by requiring U.S. Customs and Border Protection to ensure that drug interdiction guidance is up to date
    2. The Fend Off Fentanyl Act, which imposes new sanctions and cuts off illicit fentanyl at the source
    3. The Border Patrol Enhancement Act to raise pay for Border Patrol agents
    4. The Non-Intrusive Inspection Act, which improves screening of vehicles and cargo entering the United States; this can help stop fentanyl trafficking
    5. The Enhancing DHS Drug Seizures Act, which strengthens the Department of Homeland Security’s work to analyze illegal drug seizures and enhances penalties for drug traffickers
    6. The Securing America’s Ports of Entry Act, which increases the number of Customs and Border Protection Officers responsible for interdicting drugs and other dangerous goods that may be smuggled through ports of entry
  • A bipartisan bill introduced by Senator Hassan and Senator Cindy Hyde-Smith (R-MS) to ensure that students who serve in the National Guard and Reserve will be guaranteed readmission to their schools following a mobilization.
  • The Disclosing Foreign Influence in Lobbying Act that Senator Hassan cosponsored to crack down on foreign adversaries’ efforts to secretly influence U.S. policy by requiring certain lobbying disclosures
  • The Customs Trade Partnership Against Terrorism (CTPAT) Pilot Program Act that Senator Hassan cosponsored to expedite commerce at ports of entry and strengthen supply chains
  • Strengthening of our nation’s security posture by working more closely with allies and partners, including in the Indo-Pacific region, a priority of Senator Hassan’s
  • A bipartisan amendment cosponsored by Senator Hassan to combat the flow of counterfeit goods, protecting American consumers and businesses
  • An expansion of the Radiation Exposure Compensation Act that Senator Hassan cosponsored, to support Americans who develop cancer or other diseases after being exposed to radiation from nuclear weapons testing or uranium mining, milling, or transport after 1971

Support for NH priorities that are included in the NDAA:

  • Authorizing multiyear procurement for the next block of Virginia-class submarines maintained at Portsmouth Naval Shipyard
  • Authorizing increased funding for enhancements to the Enhanced Night Vision Goggle-Binocular, produced by New Hampshire manufacturers, which increase the effectiveness of U.S. service members
  • Authorizing increased funding for the Defense Established Program to Stimulate Competitive Research (DEPSCoR) to boost research at New Hampshire universities
  • Support for the Multi-Mission Dry Dock Expansion at the Portsmouth Naval Shipyard
  • Multiple provisions to address PFAS contamination in military communities and continue studies into the health effects of PFAS