Statement on Signing the Military Construction Authorization Act, 1983

October 15, 1982

I am very pleased at this time to sign the fiscal year 1983 Military Construction Authorization Act.

This is a very important piece of legislation because it provides the authority for $7 billion of vitally needed facilities in 49 States, the District of Columbia, Puerto Rico, and 19 foreign countries to support the military services, their Guard and Reserve components, the defense agencies, and our military family housing program. These facilities will contribute significantly to the achievement of a higher degree of readiness and mobilization capability and improve the quality of life for many of our military personnel and their families.

Also, this bill provides three other essential elements of support. One is our contribution to the NATO infrastructure program for continued emphasis on our overall readiness in Europe. Another is the enhancement of our overall readiness in Europe. Another is the enhancement of our military posture in Indian Ocean and Persian Gulf areas, where critical United States interests are threatened. The third is consideration for high-priority national programs, such as energy conservation and pollution abatement.

While the primary purpose of the Military Construction Authorization Act is to meet urgent military requirements, a side benefit to the economy of our country and to the American construction industry is the jobs created.

I also want to take this opportunity to express my gratitude to Committee Chairman Price and Subcommittee Chairman Brinkley and Committee Chairman Tower and Subcommittee Chairman Thurmond for their dedicated work in securing the passage of this bill.

Note: As enacted, S. 2586 is Public Law 97 - 321, approved October 15.