FORT WORTH (CBSDFW.COM) – The F-35 Joint Strike Fighter project got a vote of confidence from the House Appropriations Committee. The vote on Capitol Hill reaffirms hundreds of jobs at Fort Worth’s Lockheed Martin plant.
Much of the support came after Congresswoman Kay Granger presented an amendment. “I offered an amendment to have a commitment for the entire committee and our commitment to the Joint Strike Fighter,” Granger told KRLD NewsRadio 1080.
The Fort Worth republican says it means saving North Texas jobs. “Of course it does, and to save jobs for a long, long time, we’re talking about four decades. It really is very important,” she said.
With Congress seeking ways to cut spending, the sticker shock of spending $2.7 billion for the project this year raised concern among lawmakers.
Granger says everyone is looking at the cost for the nation’s most expensive weapons system. “It [spending] is a concern and Lockheed Martin also understands the concern.”
The Congresswoman’s amendment offers ways to cut down on spending. “One of the ways to bring that cost down is to speed up the production; make ‘em faster, make ‘em cheaper. That’s the other thing we all committed to,” said Granger. “We wanted to do it this year, add five more, but I think we’ll speed that production up and take a shorter time [to build them], to save money.”
Ultimately Granger believes she has the backing of her fellow lawmakers. “The committee wholeheartedly supports the Joint Strike Fighter. That’s very important.
The Defense Appropriations Bill is up for debate before the entire house next week.