Rogers: NO Government Shutdown – Deal Reached to Cut Spending, Provide for National Defense, Fund Federal Government for the Rest of the Year
House Appropriations Chairman Hal Rogers has announced that a bi-partisan, bi-cameral agreement on spending for the remainder of the fiscal year has been reached. The agreement between House, Senate, and White House negotiators will prevent a government shutdown, fund the entire federal government until September 30, 2011, and provide essential funding for national defense. In addition, the legislation will cut approximately tens of billions in federal spending – representing the largest non-defense spending cut in the history of the nation.
Chairman Rogers will also bring to the House Floor tonight a temporary measure to keep the government operating until Friday, April 15, to allow time for the Congress to prepare and pass the final funding legislation. The temporary measure also cuts nearly $2 billion in spending from transportation and housing programs - including $1.5 billion from High Speed Rail Corridors and Intercity Passenger Rail Service Capital Assistance, $280 million from Capital Investment Grants, $149 million from the Public Housing Operating fund, and $25 million from the University Community Fund.
The floor statement by Chairman Rogers on this agreement follows:
We come here tonight just moments before the government is forced to close its doors with very good news, we have an agreement with the Senate and White House to fund the government for the rest of the fiscal year, while providing critical resources for our national defense.
“In addition, when this agreement is signed into law, we will have taken the unprecedented step of passing the largest non-defense spending cut in the history of our nation – tens of billions larger than any other non-defense reduction. This remarkable accomplishment is the result of hard-fought negotiations that required all sides to come together to find common ground.
“The American people need and deserve to have a functioning government. But they also deserve a government that spends its taxpayer dollars responsibly – a government that won’t saddle their children and grandchildren with unsustainable and reckless debt.
“Our constituents have sent us the message that the standard tax-and-spend culture of Washington is no longer acceptable. It has been the goal of this new Republican majority to keep precious tax-dollars where they are needed most – in the hands of businesses and individuals across the nation so that they can create jobs and grow our economy.
“This agreement will mark the end of a budget process that should have been completed almost a year ago by the previous Congress. Yet, sometimes the end result is worth the wait, and the unparalleled spending cuts in this bill will not only save the taxpayers tens of billions this year, but will allow Congress to continue the trend of reductions to dig our nation out of our dangerous deficits and debt for years to come.
“Now that a broad agreement has been reached, my Committee will work over the next few days to craft legislation to bring to the floor of the House next week.
“While we continue to work, we must make responsible decisions to fund our troops and their families, keep the lights on in government, and continue to provide the services that Americans depend on every day. This temporary CR allows us to meet these needs by providing funding through Friday, April 15th, while also making $2 billion in additional spending cuts to show the American people that we are serious about cutting spending wherever and whenever we can.
“Mr. Speaker, I guarantee the final legislation will rein in federal spending, and this CR keeps us on track to cut excessive federal spending as we continue to finalize a deal.
“We are determined to deliver to the American people a complete budget with historic levels of deep and real spending cuts – cuts that will keep our economy moving in the right direction.”