Press Releases

Washington, DC –The Senate Appropriations Committee has approved the 2007 Defense appropriations bill, which includes a provision to provide $542.5 million for three additional C-17 cargo planes, U.S. Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) announced today.

The bill, which was approved by the Committee on Thursday, will need to be approved by the full Senate before it goes to conference with the House of Representatives and votes for final passage in both chambers of Congress and to the President for his signature.

“Around the world, our men and women in uniform depend on C-17 planes to deliver reliable and secure strategic airlift,” Senator Feinstein said. “The funding provided in this bill will allow the Air Force to purchase 3 additional C-17s and help keep employed the more than 6,500 Californians who build these aircraft in Long Beach. These cargo planes will help ensure that our nation’s Air Force is equipped with the very best tools it needs.”

Specifically, the bill:

  • Adds $542.5 million in funding for 3 additional C-17s within the Bridge Fund, Title IX; plus $97 million for maintenance and modifications for in-service aircraft
  • Includes the following report language:

“The C-17 airlift aircraft has proved invaluable in meeting the worldwide transport and cargo requirements of our armed forces.  The Committee is concerned that shutting down the production line after the fiscal year 2007 buys, leaving an inventory of only 183 aircraft, is premature and ill-advised.  The costs to reopen the line later could be prohibitively expensive.  The Committee directs the Department of Defense to continue funding C-17 production in the fiscal year 2008 budget. 

Funding details in Title III:

  • $2.3 billion for procuring 12 aircraft in line with the budget request; strikes $348 million requested by the Pentagon for shutdown costs; $251 million for modifications and updates.