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House Passes Spending Package, Includes DeLauro’s Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations Bill

December 21, 2020
Press Release

Legislation invests in the programs at the center of the country’s health and economic crises

WASHINGTON, DC – Today, the House passed the fiscal year 2021 omnibus spending agreement that includes historic investments secured by Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (CT-03), Appropriations Committee Chair-designate and Chair of the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee. This legislation invests in the programs at the center of the country’s health and economic crises and addresses labor, health, and education disparities across Connecticut and throughout the country. 

“The pandemic has exhausted our nation’s health care industry and exposed gaping holes in our health care infrastructure,” said Congresswoman DeLauro. “The Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education portion of this bill supports our nation’s programs that will be critical to recovering from this pandemic and helping working families thrive. From Early Head Start to Social Security to CDC and NIH, they touch individuals and families throughout their lives. They create opportunity and allow America to realize its values and promise. Paired with the emergency relief included in this package, historic investments in these programs will help our nation build back better.”

Among the many far-reaching investments, DeLauro’s Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education portion of the spending bill provides:

  • Support for working people to find good-paying jobs with $9.4 billion for the Employment Training Administration and robust funding for Workforce Innovation and Opportunity Act State Grants and Registered Apprenticeships. This includes $185 million for Registered Apprenticeships and new bill language that requires the participation of equity intermediaries and business and labor industry partner intermediaries. This language is critical to providing opportunities to build a more diverse workforce. This bill not only helps working people find employment but also helps states meet the unprecedented demand for Unemployment Insurance.
  • Critical investments for worker protection agencies including an increase of $10 million for the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA). With workers asked to perform their duties during a pandemic, this funding will be critical to protecting their rights and holding employers accountable.
  • Approximately $97 billion for programs at the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, an increase of $2.1 billion above the enacted level for 2020. These federal investments, and the increase of $1.25 billion for the National Institutes of Health, will help advance lifesaving medical research, combat opioid addiction and the HIV/AIDS epidemic, support food safety, address maternal health disparities, and find solutions to prevent gun violence.
  • Investments in early childhood programs with an increase of $220 million, $10.7 billion for Head Start and $5.9 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grant. For our children to thrive, we must support them at this vulnerable time of crucial development, especially when the twin health and economic crises we are facing have either disrupted their lives or exposed them to hardship, poverty, hunger, or trauma.
  • An increase for Title I grants of $227 million above the fiscal year 2020 enacted level, to $16.5 billion. This is the cornerstone of all federal K-12 programs to help address disparities in resources across school districts. The President’s budget shamefully proposed eliminating this program, but the House has instead bolstered this vital resource.
  • The bill also includes language amending the General Education Provisions Act to eliminate the last remaining prohibition on using federal funds for transportation costs to carry out school desegregation efforts.
  • Historic investments in the Historically Black College and University Capital Financing Program by providing $48.6 million, an increase of $2 million of fiscal year 2020. This legislation also discharges loans made to HBCUs, providing $1.34 billion in relief.

“This package also includes the other fiscal year 2021 spending bills. From key investments to protect the air we breathe and the water we drink, to critical investments in our infrastructure, to strategic investments in defense to meet the complex challenges we’re facing around the world, this spending bill invests in the American people,” said Congresswoman DeLauro. “This legislation shows that we are committed to moving our country forward.”

In addition to investments in the workforce, health, and education, this spending package includes:

Agriculture, Rural Development, Food and Drug Administration, and Related Agencies

  • The DeLauro-led, $90 million in funding for the WIC breastfeeding peer counselor program, representing a record funding level.
  • Historic funding for child nutrition programs, including approximately $552 million for the Summer Food Service Program to ensure low-income children continue to receive nutritious meals when school is not in session. In addition, the bill provides $42 million for the Summer EBT program, $30 million for school kitchen equipment grants, and $21 million for the WIC farmers market nutrition program.
  • $1.97 billion for International Food Aid, including $1.74 billion for Food for Peace grants and $230 million for McGovern-Dole International Food for Education and Child Nutrition Program – this represents the highest-ever level of funding for these two vital programs.

Commerce-Justice-Science

  • $484 million for the Byrne JAG Program to provide states, tribes, and local governments with critical funding to support a range of program areas including law enforcement, prosecution, indigent defense, courts, crime prevention and education.
  • $386 million for Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS Office), the component of the U.S. Department of Justice responsible for advancing the practice of community policing by the nation's state, local, territorial, and tribal law enforcement agencies through information and grant resources.
  • $132 million for the STOP School Violence Act to improve school security by providing students and teachers with the tools they need to recognize, respond quickly to, and prevent acts of violence.
  • Resources to investigate the use of Pyrrhotite in concrete and allocate $2 million to support partnerships with academic institutions like the University of Connecticut to understand how these materials contribute to making infrastructure unsound. In our home state of Connecticut, homeowners, businesses, schools, and local municipalities are struggling to address the widespread problem of crumbling concrete due to the mineral pyrrhotite. This bill supports the research needed to understand these critical issues facing our state.

Defense

  • $1.1 billion for 9 CH-53Ks, 2 more than requested in the President’s fiscal year 2021 budget. I fought hard to secure this significant win for Sikorsky and Connecticut’s workers.
  • $35 million for ovarian cancer research.
  • Funding to fully restore construction of a second Virginia-class submarine.

Energy and Water Development

  • Increased funding for the Army Corps of Engineers, provides $7.8 billion in total, a $145 million increase of FY20.
  • Language that prevents reorganization of Army Corps or the transfer of Army Corps functions to other agencies

Financial Service and General Government

  • $135.5 million for acquisition and construction of the United States District Court, District of Connecticut, that is currently located in the Abraham A. Ribicoff Federal Building and U.S. Courthouse in Hartford, CT.

Homeland Security

  • Language that reminds FEMA that debris on private property can cause health and safety risks and can be costly for residents. This language encourages FEMA to consider the costs of debris removal from private property when making recommendations on disaster declarations and eligibility determinations.
  • $720 million for the Assistance to Firefighter Grant Program, an increase in $365 million, to help firefighters and other first responders obtain critically needed equipment, protective gear, emergency vehicles, training and other resources necessary for protecting the public and emergency personnel from fire and related hazards.
  • $360 million for the Staffer for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response (SAFER) Grants, to provides funding directly to fire departments and volunteer firefighter interest organizations to help them increase or maintain the number of trained, "front line" firefighters available in their communities.

Interior, Environment, and Related Agencies

  • $30.4 million for the Environmental Protection Agency’s Long Island Sound Geographic Program. This is a $9.4 million increase from FY20 and represents a record funding level.
  • $15.23 million for the National Scenic Trail (NST) System, including $160k for the New England National Scenic Trail. This is a $800,000 increase over FY20 for the entire system, and a $30,000 increase for the New England NST.
  • Increases of $5.25 million for both the National Endowment for the Arts and the National Endowment for the Humanities. Each one will be funded at $167.5 million.

Transportation-Housing and Urban Development

  • More than $13.1 million for new and continuing studies and demonstration evaluations at HUD, including:
    • A qualitative study of how publicly available data on rental property health and safety violations impact landlord and renter behavior. This language is based on Congresswoman DeLauro’s Know Your Home Act.
    • Feasibility study to explore how to collect different local policies related to evictions and a statistical effort relating to the creation of an evictions database, including how information is collected, consistent with civil rights protections, to understand eviction trends by classes protected under the Fair Housing Act. This language is based on Congresswoman DeLauro’s Know Your Home Act and We Need Eviction Data Now Act.
  • $2 billion for Amtrak, equal the 2020 enacted level and $1.1 billion above the President’s budget request.
  • $700 million for Northeast Corridor Grants, equal to the 2020 enacted level and $375 million above the President’s budget request.

A division-by-division summary of the appropriations provisions is here.  

DeLauro’s statement on the coronavirus relief agreement included in this spending package is here. Her statement on the inclusion of her bill, the Preventing Online Sales of E-Cigarettes Act is here.