Hoeven: Funding Bill Rebuilds Military, Invests in Nation's Infrastructure and Supports ND Priorities
Senator Worked to Include Section 199 Agreement, Support for Farmers, Ranchers and Rural Communities
WASHINGTON – Senator John Hoeven, who serves on the U.S. Senate Appropriations Committee, today announced that the U.S. Senate has passed the Fiscal Year 2018 appropriations bill, which provides critical funding to rebuild the nation’s military, while providing for priorities including caring for veterans, investing in the nation’s infrastructure and combatting the opioid abuse epidemic. While the bill does increase spending over last year, it is still about $200 billion below peak total discretionary spending of $1.5 trillion in 2009.
“This legislation makes critical investments to rebuild our military, which is vital to our national security as we work to counter threats ranging from ISIL to hostile nations like Iran, North Korea and Russia. The legislation also provides resources for our veterans, to build infrastructure and to combat opioid abuse. Still, we must do more to address our debt and deficit by finding savings where we can, while also responsibly funding our priorities.”
Hoeven worked to include important priorities for North Dakota including support for the nation’s producers and rural communities, flood protection efforts across the state, and the section 199 agreement to ensure fair tax treatment for agriculture.
- $61 billion increase in funding to rebuild the military and invest in our national defense
- $1.57 billion in funding for border security, including fencing and technology.
- Strong funding to support the nation’s veterans.
- Rebuilds American Infrastructure by providing more than $21.2 billion in infrastructure funding.
- $4 billion to fight the opioid abuse epidemic through prevention, treatment and enforcement activities
- Continues efforts to reduce spending and find savings. Total discretionary spending reached a peak of $1.5 trillion in 2009.
SUMMARY OF NORTH DAKOTA PRIORITIES
- Supports the Nation’s Farmers and Ranchers
- ARC Pilot Program – Includes $5 million for Hoeven’s Agriculture Risk Coverage (ARC) pilot program to allow for an alternate calculation method for crop payments when NASS data is insufficient.
- Water Bank– Provides $4 million for the Hoeven Water Bank program, which compensates farmers and landowners for flooded land through 10-year, voluntary conservation agreements.
- Agricultural Research– Provides an increase of $118.5 million for research through the Agricultural Research Service and the National Institute of Food and Agriculture. Research increases include the Small Grains Genomic Initiative, the US Wheat and Barley Scab Initiative, Pulse Crop Health Initiative and research grants and extension activities at Tribal Colleges.
- USDA APHIS Blackbird Crop Damage Prevention – Provides $250,000 U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) Animal and Plant Health Inspection Service (APHIS) building at the Pembina Port of Entry. The facility will provide a permanent solution for APHIS at a secure location directly on the port and place all operations on the U.S. side of the border.
- Livestock Emissions – Includes the FARM Act, which Hoeven helped introduce. The bill exempts air emissions resulting from animal waste at farms from onerous reporting requirements.
- Electronic Logging Devices (ELDs) – Delays the ELD requirement for livestock haulers through September 30.
- Section 199 agreement – Ensures tax relief and fair tax treatment for agriculture
- Truck Weights – Allows vehicles up to 129,000 pounds to operate on a segment of the Interstate System in North Dakota
- Supports Rural Communities
- Rural Broadband – Provides $600 million for a rural broadband pilot grant/loan program targeted to areas that currently lack access to quality broadband services.
- Rural Water Circuit Rider – Provides nearly $19 million to provide technical expertise and training to rural communities through state based nonprofit organizations through the Rural Circuit Rider program, which is one of USDA’s most successful public-private partnerships.
- Rural Water and Waste Programs – Includes an additional $500 million for the Water and Waste programs to help address backlog in infrastructure needs in rural America.
- Flood Protection Efforts Across North Dakota
- Preserving Valley City’s Floodwall – Includes a Hoeven-sponsored provision, similar to the one he secured for Drayton, that allows Valley City to keep its existing floodwall, which was built on land acquired under the Hazard Mitigation Grant Program.
- Army Corps Construction Funding – Provides $2 billion, including $180 million above the president’s budget request to support upcoming Army Corps flood control projects, like comprehensive flood protection in the Red River Valley.
- Souris River Feasibility Study – Provides $400,000 to support the Army Corps’ flood protection study in the Minot region.
- Environmental Infrastructure – Includes $70 million for small community water infrastructure projects, such as the sewer upgrades Hoeven helped advance for LaMoure and Petersburg.
- Preserves Pell Grant eligibility for United Tribes Technical College students.
- National Defense – Invests in the nation’s military and fully funds a 2.4 percent pay raise for troops.
- $451 million for the Long Range Stand Off (LRSO) missile to replace the aging Air Launched Cruise Missile carried on the B-52.
- $399 million to refurbish the W80-4 warhead for use on the nation’s new nuclear cruise missile.
- $221 million for upgrades to the B-52.
- $216 million to replace the Minuteman III Intercontinental Ballistic Missile (ICBM).
- $109 million to replace the UH-1N Huey helicopters that provide security for the ICBM silos.
- $27 million for a new indoor firing range.
- Grand Forks
- $24 million for unmanned aerial systems (UAS) research at the Federal Aviation Administration, including $14 million for the UAS Center of Excellence, led by the University of North Dakota.
- $15 million to upgrade the sensors on the MQ-9 Predators used by the Customs and Border Protection.
- $8 million to support the installation of a universal payload adapter for the Global Hawk Block 40.
- $8 million for UAS research and development at DoD.
- Air Force/UND Student Pilot Training Initiative – Includes $4 million to help train Air Force ROTC pilots at UND.
- Caring for our Veterans – Provides strong funding to support veterans’ health care.
- Veterans Home Construction – Funds construction and renovation projects at State VA extended care facilities, like the ND State Veterans Home in Lisbon.
- Supports Native American Communities
- SURVIVE ACT – Helps advance the goal of Hoeven’s SURVIVE ACT by allocating 3% from the Crime Victims Fund to Indian Tribes to help improve services for tribal victims of crime. Currently, tribes receive less than 1%.
- Sisseton Wahpeton Justice Center – Increases Bureau of Indian Affairs funding for public safety and detention center construction and includes language calling on BIA to utilize their current list of facilities in need of replacement, placing Sisseton Wahpeton near the top of the line to receive funding.
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