On September 28th, the House passed three more of the 12 appropriations bills for Fiscal Year 2024, which begins on October 1st. These three bills contain major victories that rein in wasteful spending while ensuring our nation is safe and secure.
However, as we approach the FY24 deadline at midnight tomorrow without a final agreement on all 12 appropriations bills, the federal government will shut down unless a short-term spending agreement can be reached. In the event of a shutdown, my offices will remain fully staffed and operational. Please click here for specific agency contingency plans and frequently asked questions during a lapse in appropriations.
Even though these bills are just the first step, I’m proud of the wins we’ve secured so far.
SUPPORTING OUR MILITARY FAMILIES
The Fiscal Year 2024 Department of Defense Appropriations Act includes victories for national security, military families, and military readiness. This legislation:
- Modernizes our military by investing in next-generation fighter aircraft, helicopters, tactical combat vehicles, and submarines.
- Ensures military families have the support they need by including a 5.2% pay increase for our service members.
- Enhances the role of the DoD in stopping illicit drugs from entering the country by increasing funding for train and equip programs to counter fentanyl and synthetic opioids and the Transnational Crime Organizations that contribute to the opioid crisis.
- Counters Chinese aggression in the Indo-Pacific by including funding for the Pacific Deterrence Initiative to strengthen our military capabilities in the region.
I was proud to support this legislation to ensure our service members are fully equipped to keep our nation safe and deter our adversaries. We are living in an increasingly dangerous world, and this bill sends a clear message that the U.S. military is ready for combat.
COUNTERING RUSSIAN AGGRESSION
The Ukraine Security Assistance and Oversight Supplemental Appropriations Act (H.R. 5692) appropriates $300 million in funds to continue aiding the Ukrainian military in fighting Russia’s unprovoked and illegal war. The funding provided in this bill was originally included in the Fiscal Year (FY) 2024 DoD Appropriations bill but was stripped from the bill to ensure this package received a separate vote. After careful consideration, I voted in favor of this legislation.
H.R. 5692 will provide the Ukrainian military with training, equipment, and intelligence assistance, as well as establish procedures for thorough oversight of the appropriated funds. This bill:
- Establishes the Office of Special Inspector General for Ukraine Assistance, which will oversee the appropriated funds and deliver regular reports to Congress and the Secretaries of Defense and State. In addition, this office will provide recommendations on ways to prevent waste, fraud, and abuse to help save taxpayer dollars.
- Requires the Secretary of Defense to notify the appropriate committee within 15 days of obligating funds to Ukraine. In addition, the Secretary must provide quarterly reports to Congress on the status of the funds.
I understand the argument that we have already provided enough aid to Ukraine, but here’s the reality: cutting off aid to Ukraine wouldn’t end the war and it wouldn’t save the United States money. It will lead to a more costly escalation. If Vladimir Putin wins in Ukraine, Europe and other areas in the world – including our NATO allies – will be destabilized. That cost would dwarf our investment in Ukraine, as well as sacrifice American lives. Our aid to Ukraine is an investment in America’s security and standing on the world stage. China, Iran, and North Korea are taking note, and we must send a clear and strong message.
SECURING THE BORDER
The Fiscal Year 2024 Homeland Security Appropriations Act provides funding to the Department of Homeland Security to secure our border, prevent migrants from illegally crossing the United States, and bolster our national security. This legislation:
- Secures funding for physical barriers along the southwest border and includes language to expedite construction.
- Includes funding for an additional 22,000 Border Patrol Agents.
- Prioritizes funding for the transportation and removal of illegal aliens.
- Excludes the Biden Administration’s $4.7 billion southwest border contingency slush fund that would have provided funds to process and release more illegal aliens into the country.
The Biden Administration’s crisis at the southern border is an abject failure. I was proud to support this legislation that invests in resources to secure the border and prevent the flow of illicit drugs and dangerous criminals into our communities.
PRIORITIZING AMERICAN VALUES
The Fiscal Year 2024 State and Foreign Operations Appropriations Act provides funding for the Department of State and American foreign policy programs around the globe. This legislation:
- Provides unwavering support for Israel and as other key allies in the region, including Egypt and Jordan.
- Holds the United Nations and World Health Organization accountable.
- Prioritizes funding to combat the flow of fentanyl and other illicit drugs into the United States.
- Supports national security interests in the Indo-Pacific by providing funds to counter Chinese influence in the region.
At a time of great global danger and uncertainty, we should prioritize American values worldwide. I am in full support of legislation that will support our allies and counter our adversaries.
I am excited to announce recent staff promotions and additions in my Washington, D.C. office. I want to make sure you have the latest information on our team so that you know who is working for you.
Ken Brooke will take on the role of Deputy Chief of Staff in addition to serving in his current position as Legislative Director. He has served this office for more than a decade, and for the past five years has primarily handled natural resources, energy, and defense portfolios. Ken is originally from Reno and graduated from the University of Nevada with a degree in Political Science and Economics. He is currently an MBA candidate at Georgetown University McDonough School of Business.
Monika Konrad has been promoted to Senior Policy Advisor. She has served as Legislative Assistant in this office since October of 2022, and has handled financial services, transportation, veterans’ affairs, commerce and trade, judiciary, telecommunications, and foreign affairs portfolios. She previously worked in Congressman Fred Keller’s (PA-12) office, as well as for numerous nonprofits, the Republican National Committee, and Ambassador Nikki Haley. She is from the Detroit, Michigan area and graduated from the University of Michigan with a degree in Political Science and International Relations.
Erin Consler joins our team as Communications Director. She has experience in both official and campaign positions, and most recently worked on the digital marketing team at TAG Strategies. In addition, she worked for Senator John Cornyn (TX) and Senator John Boozman (AR). Erin is originally from Dallas, Texas and graduated from the University of Arkansas with degrees in Political Science and Communications.
Richard Tesoriero joins the office as Legislative Assistant, handling healthcare, education, labor, housing, homeland security, and immigration portfolios. He previously worked for numerous trade associations, where he developed legislative strategies and conducted policy analysis. He also interned for Senator Tim Scott (SC) and the House Budget Committee. Richard is from New Jersey and graduated from the Catholic University of America with a degree in Political Science.
Max West joins the office as Legislative Correspondent after serving the office Congressman Warren Davidson (OH-08) as Staff Assistant. He will oversee our entire mail operation. Max went to high school in Oakland, California and graduated from the University of Pittsburgh with a degree in economics and history.
It’s not lost on me that the social media warriors and talk show darlings are in rare form right now – but the clock is ticking, and their time is coming to an end tomorrow. Right now, they’re spewing whatever talking points help them fundraise the most, instead of providing any truth on the situation we face and the state of the world we live in.
I’m familiar with the argument that we should fund our own border and not Ukraine’s, which is exactly what the Fiscal Year 2024 Homeland Security Appropriations Act does. Two things can be true at once. However, if you believe that flat out ignoring Russian aggression makes the United States stronger in the eyes of our enemies – I disagree, especially after the disasters the Biden Administration has committed on the global stage. Caving to Iranian extortion in the form of $6 billion? The Afghanistan withdrawal disaster? Walking away from Eastern Europe now would be the equivalent of credibility strike three, and I don’t support it.
It is an active time as we continue to focus on avoiding a government shutdown and finishing the appropriations process. Please know my staff and I will keep you informed of any updates surrounding a spending agreement.
PLEASE STAY IN TOUCH
As always, thank you for subscribing to the Amodei Report. I look forward to continuing to keep you up to date on the issues you care about most. For additional information, please visit my website at Amodei.house.gov or call my Washington office: (202) 225-6155, Reno office: (775) 686-5760, or Elko phone: (775) 777-7705. To receive updates on what I am doing in Washington and in Nevada’s 2nd District follow me on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram, and YouTube.