The House Armed Services Committee’s Subcommittee on Cyber, Innovative Technologies, and Information Systems approved the subcommittee’s markup of the Fiscal Year (FY) 2022 National Defense Authorization Act (NDAA) on July 28, and the bill will now move to the full committee for consideration.

Subcommittee Chairman Jim Langevin, D-R.I., said the markup of the FY2022 NDAA was a product of hard work and bipartisan collaboration from the subcommittee.

“This year’s mark made substantial progress in key areas of innovation, technology transition, and emerging areas of competition, including the information domain and electromagnetic spectrum,” Chairman Langevin said during the markup. “This legislation improves the transition of science and technology across the valley of death. It strengthens the department’s digital engineering and testing enterprise, and improves access to innovative talent and technology.”

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“In particular, I’m proud of the focus this mark bases on fostering the department’s ability to shepherd and assist creative companies that are seeking to do business with the department,” he added. “It enhances the department’s ability to responsibly work with such innovators to bring new ideas and capabilities into the department. The mark also helps to streamline the department’s ability to ensure electromagnetic spectrum superiority and requires the department identify inventory, and where appropriate, retire legacy information technology assets, thus reducing our vulnerability in cyberspace.”

Ranking Member Jim Banks, R-Ind., said he liked the bipartisan way the subcommittee developed its markup, and emphasized that through the expansion of the Defense Innovation Unit’s work in regions where it doesn’t currently operate, the markup makes “huge steps towards solving the valley of death” – a term used to describe the period between small business development of technologies and their commercialization.

“Future conflicts will be defined by cyber and emerging technologies. However, the United States will forfeit our advantage if we fail to acknowledge that fact and act now,” Ranking Member Banks said.

“We also must invest in securing our networks, weapons, and other assets that will leave us vulnerable. To maintain our superiority in this time of great power competition, we must back up our words with actions, and that’s exactly what we’re doing today,” he said. “I believe the mark this subcommittee is putting forward today is a positive step, accelerating innovation and improving our security posture.”

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Grace Dille
Grace Dille
Grace Dille is MeriTalk's Assistant Managing Editor covering the intersection of government and technology.