Ukraine aid bill funds work with Ohio manufacturers

Funding will help plants in Springboro and Lima with work on rocket systems and tanks.

Credit: AP

Credit: AP

The foreign aid bill to help fund Ukraine’s defense against Russia includes money that will fund military manufacturing in Ohio.

The House of Representatives passed a $95 billion aid bill Saturday, including funds for Ukraine, Israel and Taiwan. Of the overall amount, $60 billion is allocated for Ukraine.

The bill includes $550 million to produce Guided Multiple Launch Rocket Systems, the Washington Post reported, based on research by the American Enterprise Institute, a Washington D.C. policy think tank. The Lockheed Martin system is built in multiple locations, including Springboro, Arkansas and Nebraska.

Last August, General Dynamics said it had been awarded a $134 million contract from Lockheed Martin Missiles and Fire Control to make launch pod containers for the system, with part of that work slated for its Springboro facility.

General Dynamics has its Springboro location at 200 S Pioneer Blvd. Questions about the work were sent to a General Dynamics representative Sunday.

In early 2023, the Biden administration reversed its opposition to sending M1 Abrams tanks to Ukraine, benefitting the M1 Abrams production line in Lima. By the summer of 2023, the Lima tank plant had sent 31tanks to Ukraine, according to the Toledo Blade.

The bill also funds Stryker armored personnel carriers, also made in Lima by General Dynamics.

In a statement released Saturday afternoon, Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin III said some $50 billion will flow into the American defense industrial base, fueling jobs in 30 states.

Congressional representatives from the Dayton area voiced both support and opposition to the bill Saturday.

“When people ask why we should support Ukraine, I like to remind them of President Xi of China’s trip to Russia last year,” U.S. Rep. Mike Turner, R-Dayton, said on the House floor Saturday. “When President Xi stood next to Vladimir Putin, he had an open mic and said, ‘Change is coming that hasn’t happened in 100 years, and we are driving this change together.’

“The ‘we’ are Vladimir Putin and President Xi, and the ‘100 years’ — we know what that is — that’s World War I and World War II. They stood together and articulated that this is a battle between authoritarianism and democracy, and we must stand for democracy and against authoritarianism.”

Rep. Warren Davidson, R-Troy is opposed to the spending.

“Today, the uniparty D.C. establishment spent $100 billion securing other countries’ borders but could not spare a cent to secure our own,” Davidson said in a statement Saturday. “My constituents’ hard-earned tax dollars will fund the Biden administration’s missionless foreign policy agenda. Most troubling is the $9 billion in humanitarian aid for Gaza, which we know will fund Hamas terrorists. It is a betrayal to our most important ally, Israel, as well as to the American people.”

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