Rep. Hanabusa Votes for Two-Year Budget Compromise
Congresswoman Colleen Hanabusa issued the following statement this morning, Friday, Feb. 9, 2018, after voting in favor of a two-year compromise to fund the government. The measure passed the House by a vote of 240-186.
“The two-year budget deal is an imperfect but necessary compromise given the current political climate in Washington, D.C. With the U.S. Pacific Command and all four component services, as well as the U.S. Coast Guard, located in the State of Hawaii and integral to preserving security, stability and freedom in the Asia-Pacific region, Congress must provide our military the predictable financial resources it needs to accomplish its mission. In addition, Hawaii is home to over 33,000 federal civilian employees, of which approximately 16,500 work in the armed services. These men and women deserve more than stop-gap funding which hampers their ability to recruit, maintain and provision military assets, acquire equipment and supplies, modernize forces and protect our nation.”
Secretary of Defense Mattis said it best, Hababusa said: “‘As hard as the last 16 years have been, no enemy in the field has done more to harm the readiness of the U.S. military than the combined impact of the Budget Control Act, defense spending cuts and operating in nine of the last 10 years under continuing resolutions.’
“In addition to a two-year defense budget, the legislation that passed tonight funds non-defense programs that support our communities, veterans, education, healthcare, children and infrastructure at a level $177 billion higher than the Trump administration requested for the current fiscal year, requiring the budget deal to suspend the budget caps imposed by the Budget Control Act of 2011 (BCA) for two years.”
“While I am sincerely disappointed we were unable to reach a comprehensive agreement to protect the DREAMERS and restore the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, I am optimistic the Senate and House will move forward with immigration bills that will protect an estimated 800,000 DREAMERS from deportation and fix DACA. I remain committed to this cause and my support for the military, our federal civilian employees and domestic programs does not diminish my resolve to protect DREAMERS and restore DACA.”
The budget deal includes:
Fiscal Year 2018- $629 billion for defense, an increase of $80 billion over the current law
$579 billion for nondefense, an increase of $63 billion over current law
Fiscal Year 2019- $647 billion for defense, an increase of $85 billion over the current law
$597 billion for nondefense, an increase of $68 billion over current law
The deal also includes:
An agreement in 2019 to close the Medicare Part D prescription drug benefit “donut hole” for seniors
$6 billion over two years for anti-opioid measures and mental health services
$20 billion for infrastructure projects like road and highway improvements, bridge repair, rural broadband and clean drinking water
$5.8 billion for Child Care Development Block Grants (CCDBG)
$4 billion to refurbish and maintain Veterans Administration hospitals and clinics
$2 billion for the National Institutes of Health (NIH)
$4 billion for college affordability programs, including those for law enforcement, first responders, and teachers
$4 billion to help whittle down the Veterans Affairs health care maintenance backlog.
Authorization of the Children’s Health Insurance Program for the next 10 years and authorization of $7 billion in total funding for community health centers for two years.