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Funding Bill for Remainder of Current Fiscal Year Is Subject to Sequestration Cuts with Notable Exemptions for Military and Other Operations Important to Iowans

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Washington, Mar 6, 2013 | Chris Deaton (202-329-6169) | comments
While official Washington stayed home today, the U.S. House of Representatives approved a measure that funds a leaner federal government and averts a shutdown of government at the end of the month. The bill, known as a continuing resolution, continues government operations for the reminder of the fiscal year, honors spending cuts recently signed into law, and protects and prioritizes Iowa veterans, among other key groups.

Latham, a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee and chairman of the Transportation, Housing and Urban Development Subcommittee, noted that the legislation moves official Washington closer to addressing fiscal matters in a timely and accountable way — but with room for much needed improvement.

“Like a horribly functioning vehicle Washington is once again faced with the sudden starts and stops of another artificial deadline. This is no way to run a government, and all in Washington must commit to do better for the American people,” said Latham. “The good news is that this bill is a responsible spending plan that cuts waste, which will make our economy and children’s and grandchildren’s futures stronger. It also keeps the government open and ensures that important safety nets will continue to protect those of our neighbors in need.”

The legislation, H.R. 933, includes full-year Defense and Military Construction/Veterans Affairs appropriations bills that the House passed on a bipartisan basis last year, and continues funding for other government agencies at current levels subject to mandated funding sequestration.

H.R. 933 contains notable exemptions to sequestration and other measures relevant to Iowa:

  • A $2.5 billion discretionary funding increase for the Department of Veterans Affairs, and full funding for veterans’ health and education programs, crucial to Iowa’s large veterans population (All of the funding within the Department of Veterans Affairs is exempt from sequestration);
  • Additional funds for weather satellites to aid in predicting weather, a valuable asset in providing advance storm warnings for Iowa farmers;
  • A provision to continue six-day mail delivery;
  • Full funding for the Department of Defense, which will help America meet critical national security priorities;
  • Extra resources for FBI staffing, including field office personnel.

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