There Will Be More C-17s:

There’s “good news” for Long Beach, Calif., says Sen. Dianne Feinstein, because the Senate’s 2006 defense appropriations bill supplement includes $227.5 million to advance purchase parts and equipment to build more C-17s. In a statement, the California Democrat calls the C-17 “the cornerstone” of the nation’s mobility force and notes that the Air Force had placed purchase of seven additional C-17s at the top of its 2007 unfunded priorities list. Legislators in the House passed a similar advance procurement provision late last year, but the House version spotted the effort only $100 million. The two Houses of Congress will have to reconcile their different dollar figures, but there seems little doubt that lawmakers on both sides of the aisle believe the Air Force should buy more than 180 of the new transports. The additional funding, says Feinstein, would keep Boeing’s Long Beach production line open beyond 2008.