Defense Bill, Including Smucker’s Measure to Expand Military Apprenticeships, Passes House

July 14, 2017
Press Release

Washington, D.C. – U.S. Rep. Lloyd Smucker (PA-16) today issued the following statement after he voted for the National Defense Authorization Act, which includes an important measure he authored to expand apprenticeship opportunities to any member of the uniformed services:

“This bipartisan defense bill provides our troops the resources they need in order to help keep our homeland safe. Among the provisions of this bill, I am particularly glad it fully funds a 2.4 percent pay increase for our military men and women, supports ongoing counterterrorism efforts across the globe, provides backing to our partner forces fighting ISIS in Syria and Iraq, and includes $150 million for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative to help defend against Russian aggression.

“I am also pleased that this bill includes my bipartisan amendment to expand the United Services Military Apprenticeship Program to any member of the uniformed services. Right now, this program is available to less than half of our total uniformed service members, but every member deserves to have the skills necessary to transition to civilian life with a steady job. It will also help infuse our workforce with strong leadership skills only the military can provide. I’m glad to work with my colleagues on the other side of the aisle, Reps. Gottheimer and Sinema, to get this commonsense measure included in the bill on behalf of our brave men and women seeking training for family-sustaining jobs in their post-military life.”

Rep. Smucker’s measure was adopted by voice with a number of other amendments. You can read Rep. Smucker’s amendment here, and watch a short floor speech here.