WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Congresswoman Elise Stefanik (R-NY-21) announced her support for the Omnibus Appropriations Bill that funds the government through the end of the fiscal year.

“This package includes many funding priorities for our district that I have fought hard for,” said Congresswoman Stefanik. “As a Member of the House Armed Services Committee, I’m pleased this bill includes the added defense spending 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. Critical for my support, this bill also provides the funding for the largest troop pay raise in eight years. As the home of more veterans than any district in New York State, I am also pleased this bill increases funding for our veterans by over $7 billion.

“A top economic priority for our region is increasing access to rural broadband, and this bill includes over $600 million for a pilot program to expand access to this critical infrastructure. This bill includes $4.7 billion in additional funding to tackle the heroin and opioid crisis that is devastating our communities, and that I continue to work to address with my colleagues on the Bipartisan Heroin Task Force.

“This legislation also includes two bills that I have worked on to combat gun violence and keep our children safe. The Fix NICS bill will strengthen our background check system and the STOP School Violence Act provides resources for school security. In fact, this appropriations bill provides more than $2.3 billion in new funding to effective mental health, training, and school safety programs.

“Furthermore, as a leader in combatting Russian aggression and a Member of the House Intelligence Committee, I am pleased this bill includes funding to address election security issues. Protecting our political institutions from foreign meddling is a top concern for Congress, and I will continue to work with my colleagues on recommendations and initiatives to ensure our elections are secure.

“Any legislation this broad is not perfect, but this bill addresses many priorities for our district and I urge my colleagues to support it.”

This legislation also includes:

  • $37 billion for NIH, a $3 billion increase over FY17 to fund additional research and development.
  • $81.5 billion for the VA to provide the necessary medical care, construction, and modernization to reduce backlogs and fulfill unfunded requirements, while also increasing oversight of the VA.
  • Nearly $1 billion for mental health programs as authorized in the 21st Century Cures Act.
  • Reauthorizes the Brownfields Law and makes significant improvements and reforms.
  • H-2B visas - gives DHS discretion to increase the size of the program, up to approximately double the annual cap of 66,000.
  • $425 million for the Land Water Conservation Fund.
  • $300 million for the Great Lakes Restoration Initiative.
  • $8.399 million for the Lake Champlain Basin Program.
  • Recognizes biomass as carbon neutral and as a renewable energy source.
  • $1.2 billion for the Agriculture Research Service.
  • $56 million for tree and wood pest activities through the Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service.