Schilling Honors the Rock Island Arsenal's 150th Anniversary PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Andie Pivarunas   
Wednesday, 11 July 2012 14:02
Washington, DC – Congressman Bobby Schilling (IL-17) today released the following statement in honor of the 150th Anniversary since President Abraham Lincoln signed Public Law 37-122, establishing the Rock Island Arsenal:

“The 17th Congressional District of Illinois is home to many remarkable folks and features, one of them being the Quad Cities’ Rock Island Arsenal.  In the 150 years since its establishment by President Lincoln on July 11, 1862, the Arsenal has played an invaluable role in our national security and our region’s economy, directly employing nearly 8,000 folks from both sides of the river and both sides of the aisle.  

“Representing the hard-working men and women of the Rock Island Arsenal is an honor.  I look forward to continuing my work with Congressman Loebsack and the rest of the Illinois/Iowa delegation to preserve the Arsenal’s future and help ensure it can continue providing for our troops and contributing to our region’s economy for another 150 years.”

On June 29, 2012, Schilling and Congressman Dave Loebsack (IA-02) introduced a bipartisan Resolution in the House of Representatives to recognize the 150th Anniversary of the Rock Island Arsenal and its ongoing contributions to our nation’s security and the Quad Cities economy.  In May, they partnered with area senators in introducing the bipartisan and bicameral Army Arsenal Strategic Workload Enhancement Act, which would help to keep arsenals like Rock Island warm and employees’ skills sharp by requiring that the Army produce a plan to ensure they are properly workloaded.  

In the Fiscal Year 2012 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA), Schilling and Loebsack included a landmark provision lifting the cap on the number of public-private partnerships that arsenals are able to enter into, maximizing the possibility for private-sector job growth at installations like the Rock Island Arsenal.  They also included in the 2012 bill a provision designating the Rock Island Arsenal as a Center of Industrial and Technical Excellence, further improving its ability to enter into public-private partnerships, provide for our men and women in combat, and strengthen the Arsenal’s core skills and manufacturing abilities.  Both provisions were signed into law as part of the comprehensive Fiscal Year 2012 National Defense Authorization Act.  

In the Fiscal Year 2013 House conference report, Schilling and Loebsack built on their prior successes and included language ensuring that the Department of Defense recognizes in its overarching national security strategy the critical manufacturing work done at facilities like the Rock Island Arsenal.  It also reviews how to maintain those skills and therefore the employees doing the work.  They also partnered with area senators in introducing the bipartisan and bicameral Army Arsenal Strategic Workload Enhancement Act, which would help to keep arsenals like Rock Island warm and employees’ skills sharp by requiring that the Army produce a plan to ensure they are properly workloaded.

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