NGAUS Lends Support for H.R. 641, the National Guard State Partnership Program Enhancement Act

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This week, the National Guard Association of the United States sent a letter of support to Rep. Madeleine Bordallo, D-Guam, for her leadership in introducing H.R. 641, the National Guard State Partnership Program Enhancement Act.

This bill would would create funding stability for the National Guard's State Partnership Program. Supported across the departments of the federal government, the creation of a permanent funding and stabilizing law will allow this security program of goodwill and partnership to continue to flourish.

The National Guard's 65-nation State Partnership Program provides unique partnership capacity building capabilities to combatant commanders and U.S. ambassadors through partnerships between U.S. states,territories and the District of Columbia and foreign countries.

The State Partnership Program supports U.S. national interests and security cooperation goals by engaging partner nations via military, socio-political and economic conduits at the local, state and national level s. The SPP evolved from a 1991 U.S. European Command decision to set up the Joint Contact Team Program in the Baltic Region with reserve-component soldiers and airmen. The program has far outperformed its original intent, branching into other parts of the world and fostering longstanding friendships among military members and civilians from both host states and partner nations. 

A recent historical addition to the program was the partnership of Oregon and Vietnam. 

Now, 20 years after the program began, it has grown into a global endeavor, becoming a key U.S. security cooperation tool, facilitating cooperation across all aspects of international civil-military affairs and encouraging people-to-people ties at the state level.

Editor's note: The March edition of National Guard, the NGAUS monthly magazine, will feature a story on the State Partnership Program. Check it out online later this month or in your mailbox soon. 

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