Bustos & Loebsack’s Amendment to Establish a Center of Excellence for Advanced and Additive Manufacturing included in National Defense Authorization Bill

Bustos and Loebsack’s behind the scenes work to help bring new investment and innovation to the Rock Island Arsenal moves ahead

WASHINGTON – Late last night, the House Armed Services Committee completed its markup of the 2019 National Defense Authorization. During this process, an amendment led by Congresswoman Cheri Bustos and Congressman Dave Loebsack was inserted into the bill to create a “Center of Excellence for Advanced and Additive Manufacturing.” Once established, this Center will support the Army’s ongoing efforts to integrate advanced manufacturing techniques into the processes at its arsenals and other industrial facilities.

The Bustos-Loebsack Amendment also gives the Army the authority to use this Center to engage in new partnerships with the private sector, local universities and community colleges to identify ways to support advanced and additive manufacturing within the Army. It would also require the development of cyber protections for Army’s advanced manufacturing methods.

Once these provisions become law, they will help position Army arsenals to be at the forefront of developing new advanced manufacturing techniques, 3D printing and the technologies of tomorrow to better serve our troops. Coming on the heels of a recently announced $30 million investment in the Joint Manufacturing Technology Center at the Rock Island Arsenal, this Amendment helps position the Quad-Cities to be the focal point in this work.

“The Rock Island Arsenal isn’t just a vital part of our national security strategy, it’s also the engine that drives our local economy,” said Congresswoman Cheri Bustos. “When our brave men and women put on the uniform and put their lives on the line, we are proud to help provide the best equipment possible to help them get the job done. The hardworking men and women of the Rock Island Arsenal are leading the way in developing 21st century manufacturing techniques that make our Army the strongest in the world. Congressman Loebsack and I are proud to be working across state lines to help them succeed.”

“The Rock Island Arsenal not only supports the brave men and women of our Armed Forces, but is also a critical piece of the Quad Cities economy. The amendment will help ensure the Arsenal has the tools and resources it needs to remain competitive,” Congressman Loebsack said. “The Arsenal’s workload is vital to the local economy and work must continue to secure and strengthen its future. I am proud to have partnered with Congresswoman Bustos to move this amendment forward. It will play a critical role in equipping our troops and spurring future economic development in the Quad Cities region. As always, I will continue my efforts to advocate for the Arsenal and its workforce.”