FORT SMITH, Ark. (KNWA/KFTA) — The United States Senate approves $83 million for the future Fort Smith pilot training center.
Sen. John Boozman of Arkansas crafted the legislation. The center will bring military personnel from all over the world to train in Fort Smith.
Next, the Senate and the House of Representatives must agree to the same language and each chamber must approve the bills, then be signed by President Joe Biden to be finalized.
According to a release from the Senate office, the package also includes:
- $67 million for the construction of I-49 near Fort Smith.
- $11.5 million to increase freight rail capacity at the Port of Little Rock.
- $4 million to construct a covered canopy at Clinton National Airport in Little Rock.
- $2.5 million for upgraded traffic infrastructure to improve security access at Ebbing Air National Guard Base.
- Transportation education, research and improved safety and fuel efficiency.
Natural State-based Agriculture Research
- $77.4 million for the Food and Drug Administration’s research promoting and protecting public health conducted at the National Center for Toxicological Research in Jefferson.
- $1.08 billion to support agricultural research conducted and funded by the U.S. Department of Agriculture, including increases for Cooperative Extension and university research.
- $110 million for human nutrition research that will support healthy child development, including the valuable work conducted at Arkansas Children’s Hospital.
- Funds the National Feral Swine Damage Management Program to reduce adverse ecological and economic impacts caused by feral swine across Arkansas and the nation.
Rural Development and Public Safety
- $1 million for the University of Arkansas Medical Sciences Arkansas Digital Interventions for Care and Education telemedicine mental health program.
- $1.5 million for a Fire and Public Safety Center in Wilson.