HR 1540, the National Defense Authorization Act for Fiscal Year 2012, was approved by the House Tuesday.  It’s important to the 19th congressional district because it deals with B-1 bombers stationed in the district at Dyess Air Force Base.

In a news release after the vote, Congressman Randy Neugebauer said the bill requires the Air Force to maintain the size of the combat fleet, and it allows the retirement of only six backup aircraft.  Neugebauer said he was particularly pleased that the bill also includes a retirement freeze of any B-1 bombers for at least six years.

However, Neugebauer said this is just the first step in a long process.

“The Senate still has to pass their version of the National Defense Authorization Act, which will likely be conferenced between the two chambers," Neugebauer said.

"While there are no guarantees that this language will ultimately become law, this legislation sends a strong message of support for the importance of the B-1 bomber as this process moves forward.”

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