The House Armed Services Committee called for the Army to devise modernization plans for the M240 7.62mm medium machine gun as lawmakers noted that inventory is "aging significantly."
The asked for $1.4 million for M240 modifications and the House Armed Services Committee granted it in their markup of the 2016 defense budget. But the committee wants the Army to do more to ensure the machine gun's sustainment.
Lawmakers requested that Army Secretary John McHugh brief the committee by March 1, 2016 on the Army's long term sustainment strategy and life-cycle sustainment plans for the machine gun.
The Army lightened the weapon in 2010 when the service introduced the M240L with a titanium receiver. The upgrades reduced the weight by five pounds when compared to the B-model.
The service later introduced a short barrel version of the M240L, which reduced its length from 48.5 inches to 44.5 inches. The short barrel version of the weapons weighs half a pound less.
"Consistent with previous committee activity regarding the need for small arms modernization, the committee encourages a general top-line increase for the M240 medium machine program across the Future Years Defense Program in order to sustain the U.S. small arms industrial base, as well as to ensure continued optimal M240 production for the military services," the committee wrote in their markup.