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U.S. House Approves $1.2 Trillion Funding Measure To Keep Federal Government Open

The package, which includes the final six of twelve appropriations bills for the current fiscal year, contains several of Case’s priorities in defense, foreign affairs, small business, education, homeland security, health, human services and labor, along with Case’s fifteenth out of fifteen Community Project Funding requests for the current year, this to assist with an emergency power generator for Pali Momi Hospital

(Washington, DC) – U.S. Congressman Ed Case (HI-01), a member of the U.S. House Appropriations Committee responsible for allocation of federal funding, announced that the U.S. House today passed, on a bipartisan vote of 286-134 a $1.2 trillion measure for the current fiscal year that prevents a partial shutdown of the federal government. 

The bill for Fiscal Year (FY) 2024, which includes the last six of Congress’ normal twelve annual appropriations bills, contains billions Case requested for Hawai‘i. It follows enactment last month of a $565 billion measure covering the first six of the normal twelve funding bills; see here

“Members of Congress on both sides of the aisle once again worked together to avoid a government shutdown and fund programs critical to our country, our state, our communities and our families,” said Case. “I don’t agree with parts of the measure, but on balance it is a bill that is good for our country and our Hawai‘i.”

Some of the provisions of special interest to Hawai‘i and for which Case advocated throughout the FY 2024 appropriations process include: 

 ·         $106 million to continue work to close the Red Hill fuel tank facility and remediate concerns related to the water crisis; 

·         $5 million for U.S. Indo-Pacific Command’s Community Engagement Initiative to strengthen ties between the military and the local community; 

·        $46 million for the Native Hawaiian Education Program; 

·         $22 million for the East-West Center; 

·         $1 billion for the Small Business Administration (SBA);

·         $27 million for the Women’s Business Centers Program; 

·         $173 million for adult employment and training activities; 

·         $320 million for Emergency Management Performance Grants; which support state and local emergency management agencies like the Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency (HI-EMA); and 

·         $12.3 billion for Head Start, an increase of $275 million.

“I was also able to provide $1.4 million to fund a backup generator in case of a disaster or other emergency need for the Pali Momi Medical Center in ‘Aiea,” said Case. “This worthy local community project would have difficulty securing funds if not for specific and direct funding from Congress.” 

Community Project Funding (CPF) enables Members of Congress to fund specific projects in their districts. The House’s CPF rules require that each project must have demonstrated community support, must be fully disclosed by the requesting Member, and is subject to audit by the independent Government Accountability Office. Case’s disclosures are here

Case submitted fifteen CPF requests this year and gained approval of all of them for a total of almost $50 million. 

Congress is working to enact its final annual funding bills before the end of the week and prevent a partial government shutdown. Today’s package includes six bills: Defense; State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs; Financial Services and General Government; Labor, Health and Human Services and Education (Labor-HHS); Homeland Security; and the Legislative Branch. It now moves to the Senate for consideration and expected approval and enactment by the President by this weekend.  

 A summary of other Case-requested and supported provisions in the major sections of the funding measure follows: 


 The FY 2023 Defense Appropriations sections of the bill provide $824.5 billion for federal agencies and programs in the Department of Defense (DoD) and Intelligence Community, including the military branches of services, the Central Intelligence Agency and the National Security Agency. 

 “My Committee on Appropriations is continuing its focus on the Indo-Pacific and Hawaii’s central role in the region,” said Case, a member of the Committee’s Subcommittee on Defense with jurisdiction over defense and intelligence community funding. “The Committee included my request for continued funding to address the Red Hill fuel crisis which will be needed for the foreseeable future.” 

Military related programs and provisions requested and secured by Case include: 

·        Over $106 million towards the decommissioning of the Red Hill Bulk Fuel Storage Facility, environmental remediation, state and local community engagement in Hawai‘i and building a more distributive fuel infrastructure for the Indo-Pacific. This is in addition to the $2.1 billion previously secured by Congressman Case and his delegation colleagues; 

·        Funding for two Virginia-class fast attack submarines, which are critical to protecting the Indo-Pacific and will be maintained at the Pearl Harbor Naval Shipyard; 

·        $410 million for the Navy’s Environmental Restoration program, which is $75 million over the President’s budget request, plus an additional $232.8 million for the environmental restoration of Formerly Used Defense Sites. These funds will help accelerate efforts to remediate per- and polyfluoroalkyl (PFAS) contamination and remove unexploded ordnance and discarded military munitions in Hawai‘i and throughout the nation; 

·        $40 million to advance development of a next-step radar system to protect Hawai‘i from missile attacks. 

·        $5 million for U.S. Indo-Pacific Command’s Community Engagement Initiative to strengthen the ties between the military and the local community; 

·        $196 million for the Defense POW/MIA Accounting Agency, which maintains critical scientific laboratories at Joint Base Pearl Harbor-Hickam; 

·        $178 million for the Sea-Based X-Band Radar, which helps defend Hawai‘i from ballistic missile threats; 

·        $200 million for the Readiness and Environmental Protection Initiative (REPI), $20 million above the President’s request.

The DoD created the REPI program in response to land development and loss of habitat in the vicinity of or affecting military installations, ranges and airspace that can lead to restrictions or costly and inadequate training and testing alternatives. Through REPI, DoD works with state and local governments, conservation organizations and willing private landowners to address these challenges to the military mission and the viability of DoD installations and ranges.

For 2023, REPI will provide $10 million for four projects in Hawai‘i, which will be coupled with $18.5 million in partner contributions. These projects will preserve and protect cultural, natural, and land resources across the state near four Hawaiʻi-based installations including the Pacific Missile Range Facility Barking Sands, Pōhakuloa Training Area, Marine Corps Base Hawai‘i, and U.S. Army Garrison-Hawai‘i; 

·        $11 million for the Asia Pacific Regional Initiative, a key program supporting U.S. Indo-Pacific Command. This program enables the military to execute Theater Security Cooperation activities, such as humanitarian assistance and paying incremental personnel costs of training and exercising with foreign security forces. The initiative is a critical tool for the U.S. military to strengthen relationships throughout the Indo-Pacific region; 

·        Over $295 million for “Civil-Military Programs,” to include support for Hawaii’s Youth Challenge Academy;

·         $100 million for the Defense Community Infrastructure Program, which last year provided $2.5 million to the State of Hawai‘i Department of Land and Natural Resources on Hawai‘i Island in conjunction with the Army’s Pōhakuloa Training Area;

·         Over $70 million for Impact Aid programs, which includes Impact Aid for children with disabilities. Out of a concern for possible discrepancies and inconsistencies, the Committee also called for the Director of the Department of Defense Education Activity to submit a report on how local educational agencies receive this funding; 

·        Blocked efforts to change the command and control structure of the U.S. Pacific Fleet. There have been efforts within the department to streamline control of forces under one command structure, which would limit the ability of Navy forces in Hawai‘i to respond quickly to changing threats in the Indo-Pacific region;

·         Continued military contracting preference language for Native American tribes and Native Hawaiian Organizations; and

·         Continued support for providing humanitarian and similar assistance by using Civic Action Teams in the Freely Associated States of Palau, the Federated States of Micronesia and the Marshall Islands. 

The measure also includes: 

·        $300 million for the Ukraine Security Assistance Initiative. This is in addition to $9 billion to replenish United States stocks of equipment sent to Ukraine, provided by the recent Additional Ukraine Supplemental Appropriations Act; 

·        $22 million for the National Security Innovation Network (NSIN). The NSIN is a government program office that collaborates with major universities and the venture community to develop solutions that drive national security innovation and has small business participants in Hawai‘i;  

·        $1.2 billion investment in drug interdiction and counter-drug activities, including increased funding for counter-narcotics support and the National Guard Counter-Drug Program; and 

·        Full funding necessary to support the proposed 5.2% military pay raise. 

A summary of the Defense Appropriations bill from the House Democratic Appropriations Committee staff is here

State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs 

The Appropriations Committee approved an overall funding level of $51.5 billion, a cut of $8.2 billion from the FY 2023 level, for the State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs Appropriations.  

This measure funds U.S. foreign policy programs and agencies, including the Department of State, U.S. Agency for International Development, U.S. contributions to the United Nations and its agencies and more. The bill provides for international diplomatic presence and outreach as well as foreign assistance in public health, basic education, educational and cultural exchanges, climate change and more. 

“I strongly disagreed with the funding cuts to various important international assistance efforts, but the bill also advanced many importance priorities for the Indo-Pacific” explained Case.

“As we continue to focus on the growing influence of China in the Indo-Pacific, our national security interests must also include diplomatic engagement and assistance to promote peace and diplomacy in the region,” said Case. “Continued funding for our East-West Center in Hawai‘i helps to support our country’s standing in an area widely seen as the most dynamic and fastest-growing region on earth.” 

Programs and provisions in the measure secured by Case and related to Hawai‘i and the Indo-Pacific include:

·         $22 million for the East-West Center; 

·        $2.2 billion for assistance and $1.2 billion for diplomatic engagement in support of the implementation of the Indo-Pacific Strategy, which promotes peace, prosperity and democracy in the region; 

·        $175 million for the Pacific Islands region, an increase of $25 million; 

·        Report language supporting funding for the Young Pacific Leaders Program, a Department of State program for emerging young leaders from Hawai‘i, Guam, Samoa, Tonga, Fiji, Solomon Islands and other Pacific nations; 

·        Report language encouraging the Department of State to increase the number of scholarships available for Pacific Islanders to study in the United States, many of whom study at the University of Hawai‘i; 

·        $431 million for the Peace Corps; 

·        Language in support of expanding the U.S. diplomatic presence in the Pacific Islands and expanding the programming of the U.S. Agency for Global Media in the region; 

·        Report language requiring the Department of State to create a strategy on trade capacity building in the Pacific Islands; and 

·        Report language recommending the expansion of the International Law Enforcement Academy to the Pacific Islands and supporting the Pacific Islands in their efforts to combat transnational crime.  

The bill also sustains or increases funding for several foreign policy programs supported by Case including: 

·        $421 billion for peacekeeping operations, a decrease of $40 million; 

·        $1.3 billion to support United Nations international peacekeeping activities, a decrease of $180 million; 

·        $741 million for educational and cultural exchange programs, which include the Fulbright programs, a decrease of more than $36 million; 

·        $1.5 billion for contributions to international organizations; 

·        $1.5 billion for the Global Fund to Fight AIDS, Tuberculosis and Malaria; 

·        $915 million for maternal and child health programs; 

·         $970 million for basic education, an increase of $810 million; and

·         $3.9 billion for migration and refugee assistance, an increase of $1 billion. 

A summary of the State, Foreign Operations and Related Programs Appropriations bill from the House Democratic Appropriations Committee staff is here

Financial Services and General Government 

The bill provides $13.7 billion to fund the U.S. Treasury Department, federal courts, the Federal Communications Commission, the Office of Personnel Management and various independent agencies.  

For the SBA, the bill provides $1 billion, including $316.8 million for entrepreneurial development programs that assist small businesses with quality training, counseling and access to resources.  

“Our Hawai‘i is truly ‘small business country,’ with some 135,000 small businesses making up 99 percent of all businesses in the state and employing some 275,000 of our people,” said Case.

“We also have a very unique small business mix, with some of the highest levels of minority, women and veteran-owned small businesses in the country, as well as small business economy. All of this takes unique, targeted assistance, which the SBA provides, and so I focus especially on SBA and other federal programs that benefit our small businesses.” 

Case gained approval in the measure for his funding requests for federal programs and services important for the State of Hawai‘i including:  

·        $28 million for the Native American Community Development; Financial Institution Assistance Program; 

·        $5 million for the Native American Outreach Program; 

·        $4 million for the Historically Underutilized Business Zones Program; 

·        $27 million for the Women’s Business Centers Program; 

·        $24 million for the Healthy Food Financing Initiative; 

·        $140 million for Small Business Development Centers; 

·        $109 million for the Drug-Free Communities Program; 

·         $20 million for the State Trade Expansion Program;

·        $9 million for the Regional Innovation Clusters Program;

·        $299 million for the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas Program;

·        $41 million for the Microloan Technical Assistance Program;

·        A provision directing FinCEN to report on its ongoing efforts to counter money laundering in Hawai‘i and the U.S. Pacific territories to promote national security; and

·         Continuation of an additional federal judgeship for Hawai‘i to handle a high caseload. 

The bill also provided $324 million for Community Development Financial Institutions (CDFIs). CDFIs are specialized community-based financial institutions that promote economic development by providing financial products and services to people and communities underserved by traditional financial institutions, particularly in low-income and minority communities.  

A summary of the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations bill from the House Democratic Appropriations Committee staff is here

Labor, Health and Human Services (HHS), and Education 

The Labor-HHS sections of the bill provide for significant investments in key federal programs that increase public health research and capacity, expand access to education and childcare, address labor market demands, improve health outcomes and bolster our nation’s responses to current and future public health threats. The discretionary funding level is $194.4 billion. 

“Our $194.4 billion Labor-HHS bill helps families and communities with the high costs of living, trains Americans for American jobs, supports workers, and strengthens our health care infrastructure,” said Case. 

The bill addresses our nation’s labor shortages and supports workers with:  

·         $1.8 billion for Job Corps, which provides career development services for youth; 

·        $173 million for adult employment and training activities. 

·         $948 million for youth training;

·         $285 for the Registered Apprenticeship Program;

·        $115 million to provide ex-offenders with training and credentials in fields that prepare them for successful reintegration into society; 

·        $105 million for the YouthBuild program to provide at-risk youth with basic education and job skills training in the construction field; 

·        $66 million for the Homeless Veterans Reintegration Program; and 

·        $557 million for AmeriCorps State and National Grants.  

The bill helps Hawai‘i and the nation respond to current and future health threats with: 

·        $47.1 billion for the National Institutes of Health, to support a wide range of biomedical and behavioral research;

·         $1.5 billion for the Advanced Research Projects Agency for Health within the Department of Health and Human Services, to accelerate the pace of scientific breakthroughs for diseases such as ALS, Alzheimer’s disease, diabetes and cancer;

·        $1.9 billion for Community Health Centers, to provide high quality cost-effective health care to predominantly low-income and medically underserved communities;

·        $350 million for public health infrastructure and capacity nationwide;

·        $286 million for the Title X Family Planning Program; and

·         $12 million for firearm injury and mortality prevention research. 

 The bill invests in public education, school safety and childcare with:

  ·        $18.4 billion for Title I Grants to Local Educational Agencies (low income schools); 

·        $12.3 billion for Head Start, an increase of $275 million above the FY 2023 enacted level; 

·        $8.7 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grant, an increase of $725 million above the FY 2023 enacted level; 

·         $2.2 billion for Career, Technical and Adult Education;

·        $1.2 billion for the Federal TRIO Program, to provide academic support to low-income individuals, first-generation college students, veterans and individuals with disabilities;

·        $315 million for Preschool Development Grants;

·        $70 million for Teacher Quality Partnerships, to support teacher preparation and residency programs;

·        $125 million for McKinney-Vento Education for Homeless Children and Youth Program, which provides homeless youth with the health services and academic support they need to succeed in and out of the classroom;

·        $65 million to continue and expand Strengthening Community College Training Grants, which offer training to workers in in-demand industries at community colleges and four-year institutions to help meet local labor market needs;

·         $18 million for youth violence prevention; and 

·        $23 billion for federal student aid programs to provide $6,335 for the maximum Pell Grant award.  

The bill supports our Native Hawaiian community with: 

·         $60 million for Native American job training programs authorized under the Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act of 2014;

·         $38 million for Native American Nutrition and Supportive Services grants to promote the delivery of nutrition and home and community-based services to Native American, Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian Kūpuna; 

·        $46 million for the Native Hawaiian Education Program; 

·        $25 million for the Strengthening Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian-Serving Institutions Program. These funds will support tutoring; mentorships, internships, faculty development and other activities to support Alaska Native and Native Hawaiian students at the collegiate level; 

·        $27 million for the Native Hawaiian Health Care Systems, with $10 million being included for Papa Ola Lōkahi; 

·        $4 million to establish a Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander Health Research Office within the National Institute on Minority Health and Health Disparities. These funds will be used to address Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander health disparities as well as supporting research being done by Native Hawaiian/Pacific Islander investigators; 

·         $4 million for the Center for Indigenous Innovation and Health Equity within the Office of Minority Health to advance Indigenous solutions to achieve health equity and encourage the Department of Health and Human Services to partner with universities in these efforts; and

·        $3.8 million for the Native American/Native Hawaiian Museum Services Program, which provides grants to Native American-serving organizations and federally recognized tribes to sustain indigenous heritage, culture and knowledge through museum-related services. 

A summary of the Labor, HHS and Education bill from the House Democratic Appropriations Committee staff is here.  

Homeland Security 

The FY 2024 Homeland Security bill includes $61.8 billion for all programs under the jurisdiction of the Department of Homeland Security. 

The bill supports the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA), the U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP), Immigration and Customs Enforcement ,the U.S. Citizenship and Immigration Services, the Cybersecurity and Infrastructure Security Agency, the Transportation Security Administration (TSA), the U.S. Coast Guard, the U.S. Secret Service and more. Case is a member of the Appropriations Committee’s Subcommittee on Homeland Security which is responsible for this bill. 

“The U.S. Coast Guard is ramping up its presence in the Indo-Pacific, which is good news not only for Hawai‘i but for the island nations in the South Pacific that depend our assistance,” said Case, a member of the Appropriations Committee’s Subcommittee on Homeland Security with jurisdiction over this bill. “My colleagues and I recognize the U.S. Coast Guard’s critical mission in this region of the world, and I will continue to see what I can do to reinforce support for the U.S. Coast Guard as it plans to expand its deployments in the coming years.” 

Other programs and provision include:

·         $320 million for Emergency Management Performance Grants, which support state and local emergency management agencies like the Hawai‘i Emergency Management Agency; 

·        $324 million for assistance to firefighter grant programs, which are a major source of funding for county fire departments; 

·        $10 million for the Citizenship and Integration Grant Program, which provides citizenship preparation resources, support and information to immigrants and immigrant-serving organizations; and 

·        A provision directing FEMA to report on its strategies to respond to the unique challenges posed by disasters in Hawai‘i and other non-contiguous areas.  

The measure also provides the following priorities requested by Case:

·         $200 million for the acquisition of at least two additional Coast Guard Fast Response Cutters, which will support U.S. Coast Guard operations in the Indo-Pacific; 

·        $91 million for the National Domestic Preparedness Consortium, which funds University of Hawaii’s National Disaster Preparedness Training Center; 

·        $468 million for the State Homeland Security Grant Program, which provides funding to protect against terrorism and other threats; and 

·        $95 million for the Transit Security Grant Program, which protects critical transportation infrastructure from acts of terrorism.  

A summary of the Homeland Security bill from the House Democratic Appropriations Committee staff is here

Case’s Appropriations Committee is responsible for allocating over $1.7 trillion in funding to federal government agencies, departments and organizations on an annual basis. Case and his Appropriations Committee are already working on the Fiscal Year 2025 appropriations process.