By Dave Williams  – Staff Writer, Atlanta Business Chronicle

Aug 13, 2018, 2:40pm

Robins Air Force Base and the University of North Georgia (UNG) are major beneficiaries of the fiscal 2019 Defense Authorization Act President Donald Trump signed into law Monday.

The legislation gives the air force base in Warner Robins, Ga., a new mission and authorizes the Pentagon to establish cyber institutes at colleges and universities across the country, with a preference for the nation’s six senior military colleges, including UNG.

The annual defense bill provides funding to roll out the new Advanced Battle Management System (ABMS), which will perform global space intelligence and reconnaissance. The Air Force earlier had announced the ABMS will be hosted at Robins.

As the Air Force transitions to the new mission, it will continue to fly the existing E-8C Joint Surveillance Target Attack Radar System (JSTARS), based at Robins, under a plan covering the next 10 years.

“Georgia’s military community plays a central role in fulfilling President Trump’s National Defense Strategy,” said U.S. Sen. David Perdue, R-Ga., a member of the Senate Armed Services Committee. “This defense bill delivers the tools we need to protect Americans at home and abroad … against evolving threats around the globe.”

The cyber institutes initiative is aimed at ensuring a robust pipeline of active duty personnel, guard members and reservists with training to help protect the nation from cyber attacks.

Besides UNG, America’s senior military colleges include Texas A&M, Virginia Tech, The Citadel, Virginia Military Institute and Norwich University in Vermont.

Trump signed the $717 billion bill, named for terminally ill Senate Armed Services Committee Chairman John McCain, R-Ariz., during a ceremony at Fort Drum in upstate New York.