WASHINGTON, DC - Congressman Steny H. Hoyer (MD-05) released the following statement after passage of the second minibus of Fiscal Year 2021 appropriations bills, which includes Defense, Commerce-Justice-Science, Energy and Water Development, Financial Services and General Government, Labor-HHS-Education, and Transportation-Housing and Urban Development:
"Today, the House will complete work on another six appropriations bills, funding 96% of government for Fiscal Year 2021 and doing its job to avert a shutdown. Unbelievably, the Republican-led Senate has not even marked up a single appropriations bill in committee. I would remind them that governing requires making tough choices – or even any choices – and their failure to move forward with the appropriations process reveals that Senate Republicans would rather do nothing and risk a shutdown than show the country what their funding priorities are.
"In contrast, House Democrats are making it clear what we believe Congress’s priorities ought to be. Not only does our appropriations package today provide robust funding for our national defense, but it also gives our troops a 3.0% pay raise and supports renaming installations currently named after Confederate officers. This bill helps our people meet the challenges posed by COVID-19 and its economic impacts by increasing funding to combat homelessness through public housing and assistance for tenants; expanding public health infrastructure; blocking funds from being used for a partisan lawsuit to strike down the Affordable Care Act; and supporting critical research through the National Institutes of Health and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Our legislation also helps root out racial bias in policing by funding $400 million in police reform initiatives, and we are expanding funding to study the epidemic of gun violence in our country. Meanwhile, our legislation expands Pell Grants, supports after-school programs, and increases funding for Head Start and preschool development, investing in America’s students to prepare the next generation for success. We are also funding a down payment on the INVEST in America Act that would invest substantial resources in infrastructure as well as providing support for Amtrak as it continues to serve the American people even during the uncertain days of this pandemic.
"I am particularly pleased that our appropriations package includes strong support for Metro and for the Purple Line, which is critical for economic development and job growth in Maryland. It also invests in NASA’s exploration of space and several missions operating at the Goddard Space Flight Center in Maryland’s Fifth District, including the Roman Space Telescope, the PACE mission to study our ocean ecosystem, and the CLARREO Pathfinder. Moreover, the package continues Congress’s strong support for the Full Service Community Schools program through the Department of Education.
"I want to thank Chairwoman Lowey again for her outstanding work shepherding these bills through committee and to passage on the Floor. We set an ambitious goal of completing nearly all House appropriation bills before the end of July for two years straight after the previous Republican-led Congresses had missed end-of-fiscal-year deadlines year after year. Because of Chairwoman Lowey’s leadership and tireless work, alongside her subcommittee chairs, the Democratic-led House was able to get the job done. As she prepares to retire from the House at the end of the 116th Congress, I join all of my colleagues in thanking her for her service and applauding her expert stewardship of the Appropriations Committee.”