WASHINGTON, D.C. â?? The Idaho Congressional Delegation announced that the Senate Appropriations Committee today approved several projects for eastern Idaho in the Fiscal Year 2005 Defense Appropriations bill. â??Idaho should be proud of its role in our nationâ??s defense. These projects underscore the amount of research, development, and training Idaho provides and will continue to provide,â?? said Craig. â??More importantly, this bill continues funding our troops who stand in harmâ??s way to protect our freedoms and to spread those freedoms worldwide.â?? â??This bill funds Idahoâ??s work in keeping our nation safe and free,â?? Crapo said. â??Individuals and facilities in Idaho are fully involved in meeting these critical objectives, with efforts now underway in intelligence gathering, counterterrorism activities, and biological defense. I commend Senator Craig on the work he has done in securing these funds for Idaho.â?? â??Through the tremendous skills of the men and women at Mountain Home, Gowen Field, the INEEL, and our state's institutions of higher learning, Idahoans are deeply engaged in many crucial efforts to protect our nation and its citizens,â?? said Congressman Mike Simpson. â??Each of these projects will allow Idaho's institutions, men and women in uniform, and talented researchers to further contribute to our national security.â?? Congressman Otter said, â??Providing for the common defense has been a proper and essential role of government from the beginning of our republic. It's enshrined in the Preamble to the Constitution, and it is a function of Congress to ensure the men and women on the ramparts of liberty have the means to do their duty. Having just spent some time with members of my old National Guard brigade preparing for deployment to Iraq, I'm particularly pleased that this bill recognizes Idaho's role in keeping America safe and free.â?? The eastern Idaho projects include: â?¢ $4,000,000 for Read Out Integrated Circuit Manufacturing Improvement: This project aims to improve the manufacture of read out integrated circuit (RIOC) semiconductors, which is vital to the development of the new Joint Strike Fighter. AMI Semiconductor of Idaho is nationally preeminent in this technology. The Air Force is expected to work with AMI on this project. â?¢ $2.7 million for Unmanned Systems Research Park at the INEEL: An emerging and rapidly expanding unmanned vehicles program is being developed at the INEEL with a focus on supporting a wide variety of defense- and national security-related needs. The current program includes working for various defense agencies developing a wide-spectrum of capabilities, including helping to develop a next-generation counter-mine robot and assisting in developing new counter-UAV techniques and technologies. â?¢ $1.8 million for Research of Frequency Selective Surfaces and Thermal Signatures (INEEL): There is a constantly growing demand for new technologies to identify friendlies and foes and to provide technologies for signature reduction to mask military assets from adversarial surveillance and monitoring. Through the project, the INEEL is demonstrating the use of frequency selective surface treatments to reduce or alter the infrared thermal signatures of critical assets. â?¢ $1 million for High-Intensity Pulsed Radiation Facility for Chem and BioAgent Defeat (ISU): This project addresses the urgent need to develop portable, high-intensity, radiation-producing accelerators that can be used to destroy a wide variety of chemical/biological (CB) agents with minimal collateral damage. This is the third year of the three-year project. â?¢ $1 million for the National Information Assurance and Training Center (ISU): Provides continued funding for the Center, which is involved in developing, distributing, testing, evaluating, verifying, and validating Information Assurance training and education material in conjunction with universities nationwide. In addition, the Center is developing cyber-defense laboratories. The overall bill includes a $416 billion in defense-related spending, including $25 billion in a contingent emergency reserve fund for operations in Iraq and Afghanistan as requested by the President. The bill now goes to the President for his signature.