July 7, 2022

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Inflation Bonus Proposed for Troops

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Troops making less than $45,000 would get an “inflation bonus” under an amendment proposed to the $802 billion annual defense policy bill being hammered out by Congress, reports Military.com. The proposed bonus of 2.4% was floated by Rep. Jared Golden (D-ME) as part of a proposed amendment to the bill, under debate this week in the House Armed Services Committee.

The US Senate advanced a bipartisan gun violence bill, reports UPI. In a provisional vote Tuesday, the lawmakers advanced the 80-page bill in a vote of 64-37, 14 Republicans joining Democrats. The bill looks to gun restrictions, mental health funding, and school security investments. The Hill reports Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said Wednesday that she expects the Senate to pass its new gun-reform package in time for the House to take it up before the weekend.

Baltimore native US Army Reserve SGT Ryan Harris, 25, was shot and killed early Thursday morning, June 16, near his South Calvert Street apartment building which is near the Inner Harbor, City Hall, and Baltimore Police headquarters, reports The Baltimore Sun. He leaves behind two young sons and a successful military career, said his family.

Tesla faces losing its crown by 2024 to Volkswagen as the world’s biggest electric car maker, reports Business Insider. A study by Bloomberg Intelligence expects the German giant to double production to more than 2 million battery-powered vehicles in 2024, overtaking Tesla.

President Joe Biden will call on Congress to pause the 18-cent-per-gallon federal gas tax for three months, reports Fox Business, without stripping money from the Highway Trust Fund that finances highways and mass transit.



The Army-Navy football game is coming to five East Coast cities beginning in 2023, reports Military Times: Boston, Washington, Baltimore, and East Rutherford, NJ, just outside of New York City. The start of the five-year cycle beginning in 2023 is set for December 10 at Boston’s Lincoln Financial Field. It will be the first Army-Navy game ever played in New England.

50 years later, killer Tropical Storm Agnes continues to haunt the Chesapeake Bay watershed. In some ways, reports The Bay Journal, North America’s largest estuary has never been the same since days of relentless rain in July 1972 sent a shock wave of filthy water through the watershed. Agnes killed 122 people in a rampage through a dozen East Coast states, causing $3.1 billion in damage, the nation’s costliest natural disaster at the time.

It was 80 years ago — June 15, 1942 — when war erupted off Virginia Beach. With 50,000 people splashing in the surf or lounging along the shore of Virginia Beach, it would have been difficult to recognize that the country was at war, until ships started blowing up within sight of the beachgoers, USNI reports. A German U-boat had evaded US defenses and, trading torpedoes for mines, wreaked havoc at the entrance to the Chesapeake Bay.

Two Korean War vets with less than “spick and span” tours as “gung-ho Marines” have their first face-to-face reunion almost 70 years later, reports Marine Corps Times. Thomas Fagan and Donald Goeppner have kept in touch but hadn’t seen one another since their caper-filled service as Marines during the Korean War. They survived living in caves and endured temperatures of 38 degrees below zero, as well as spending time in brigs and stowing away aboard a merchant ship. When their time in the war ended, they were still privates first class. “We weren’t good for promotion,” Goeppner said, “we were gung-ho Marines but not what they called spick and span.”

After only two years of operations, the US arm of European aerospace powerhouse Airbus is mapping out expansion plans — with an eye in particular on moving some production of satellite laser communications terminals stateside, Rob Geckle, CEO of Airbus US Space & Defense, told Breaking Defense. “I’m focusing on laser communication terminals because I think that’s the strongest candidate to build in the US.”

Lawmakers want the Pentagon to speed-up hypersonic research and development, reports Military Times. The draft policy bill from the House Armed Services Committee aims to accelerate and coordinate across the services and address workforce and industrial base limitations.

Turkey is planning to host Russian, Ukrainian, and UN officials for talks aimed at resuming grain exports stuck in Black Sea ports, reports Al Jazeera. Numerous media reports cited Turkish presidential sources saying the meeting will be preceded by a visit to Moscow this week by a Turkish defense delegation to discuss details of a possible safe sea corridor in the Black Sea.

Three Iranian fast attack craft harass US Navy ships in Strait of Hormuz, USNI reports with video. Cyclone-class patrol coastal ship USS Sirocco (PC-6) and Spearhead-class USNS Choctaw County (T-EPF-2) were in the Strait of Hormuz on Monday when they were approached by three Iranian Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps Navy fast attack craft in international waters. “One of the IRGCN vessels approached Sirocco head-on at a dangerously high speed and only altered course after the US patrol coastal ship issued audible warning signals to avoid a collision. The Iranian vessel also came within 50 yards of the US Navy ship during the interaction, and Sirocco responded by deploying a warning flare,” reads a statement from US 5th Fleet.

Military law enforcement has arrested an American airman in connection with the April attack on a US base in Syria that injured four service members, reports CNN.  Air Force spokeswoman Ann Stefanek said, “An airman was taken into custody stateside in conjunction with the attack in Green Village, Syria. After reviewing the information in the investigation, the airman’s commander made the decision to place him in pretrial confinement.” The Pentagon “won’t release the individual’s name unless charges are preferred,” she said.

Rep. Donald Norcross (D-NJ) seeks to bring back the tougher “Buy American” legislation that rankled allies, through the House’s annual defense authorization bill. The renewed attempt to codify a Biden executive order into law would only pertain to large defense programs and might include ways to assuage allies, reports Defense News. Norcross says he’s working with Republicans on the HASC to draft a compromise amendment when the panel marks up its version of the authorization.


Cardno GS Inc., Charlottesville, Virginia, is awarded a $25,000,000 firm-fixed-price, indefinite-delivery/indefinite-quantity, architect-engineering contract for multi-discipline architect-engineer services for Air Installations Compatible Use Zones and Range Air Installations Compatible Use Zones studies, and other encroachment management or readiness sustainment and compatibility-related services. The work to be performed provides for architectural and engineering services of an interdisciplinary nature required for preparation of encroachment management, readiness sustainment and compatibility-related planning documents, and related technical support studies and outreach training materials for Department of Navy installations throughout the United States and abroad. The maximum dollar value, including the base period and four option years, is $25,000,000. Work will be performed primarily in the continental US, and potentially for worldwide locations, and is expected to be completed by June 2027. Fiscal 2022 operation and maintenance (Navy) funds in the amount of $10,000 will be obligated at time of award. This contract was competitively procured via the sam.gov website, with two offers received. The Naval Facilities Engineering Systems Command Atlantic, Norfolk, Virginia, is the contracting activity (N62470-22-D-0006).

UPDATE: Atlantic Diving Supply Inc., doing business as ADS, Virginia Beach, Virginia (SPE2DE-22-D-0029, $12,000,000), has been added as an awardee to the multiple award contract for dental equipment, accessories and consumables for the Defense Logistics Agency Electronic Catalog, issued against solicitation SPE2DE-20-R0007 and awarded June 10, 2021.

Northrop Grumman Systems Corp., San Diego, California, is awarded a $248,225,000 modification (P00027) to a previously awarded fixed-price incentive (firm-target) contract (N0001919C0008). This modification adds scope to procure two additional low rate initial production Lot 5 MQ-4C Triton unmanned aircraft systems for the Navy. Work will be performed in San Diego, California (24.8%); Palmdale, California (14.8%); Red Oak, Texas (11.6%); Baltimore, Maryland (9.7%); Moss Point, Mississippi (8.1%); Salt Lake City, Utah (6.6%); Bridgeport, West Virginia (5.7%); Indianapolis, Indiana (4.6%); Newton, North Dakota (1.6%); San Clemente, California (1.5%); various locations within the continental U.S. (9.8%); and various locations outside the continental U.S. (1.2%), and is expected to be completed in February 2027. Fiscal 2022 aircraft procurement (Navy) funds in the amount of $248,225,000 will be obligated at the time of award, none of which will expire at the end of the current fiscal year. The Naval Air Systems Command, Patuxent River, Maryland, is the contracting activity.

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