North Country Congresswoman Stefanik supports Bipartisan Budget Act citing increase to military spending
Friday, February 9, 2018 - 9:27 am

Congresswoman Elise Stefanik, a Republican, has announced she will support in the House the Bipartisan Budget Act worked out in the Senate late Wednesday led by Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Kentucky, and Minority Leader Chuck Schumer, R-NY.

In a press release Thursday, she cited military spending as a major reason to support the plan that contains “critical legislation to adjust spending caps to more adequately fund our military and other priorities,” the press release said.

“I will be supporting the bipartisan deal that increases total defense spending so that we can give our men and women in uniform the resources they need to keep us safe,” said Stefanik. “This agreement also funds a well-deserved pay raise for our brave servicemembers -- including the soldiers of the 10th Mountain Division -- that I advocated for in the National Defense Authorization Act. I ran against the devastating effects of the budget sequester on our national defense, and this deal lifts this harmful policy so that Secretary Mattis can combat the readiness crisis and rebuild our military to defend us against 21st century threats.”

The cap on military spending would rise by $80 billion this fiscal year and $85 billion in the next.

Nondefense spending would be allowed to increase by $63 billion this year and $68 billion next year.

“This deal contains funding for many other important initiatives for our district, including infrastructure and rural broadband,” Stefanik said in her support announcement. “This deal includes necessary reforms that will help small dairy farmers across our district and it includes additional funding to combat the opioid crisis and support mental health programs, two critical issues affecting families across the North Country.

“I have been an outspoken advocate for Community Health Centers and for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, and this bipartisan deal provides funding to support these critical programs,” she said.

“I am also pleased this includes additional funding to support the life-saving research at NIH as well as to reduce the VA healthcare maintenance backlog.

“Additionally, this agreement gives needed aid to communities hit by hurricanes in Puerto Rico, Florida, the U.S. Virgin Islands, and Texas, and the wildfires in California.”

Before it becomes law, full votes in the Senate and House will be required. To avoid a government shutdown, it must be approved before Friday.

You can read the bill in its current form of 652 pages here.