Chair DeLauro Statement at Full Committee Markup of Fiscal Year 2023 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies Funding Bill

2022-06-30 10:07

WASHINGTON — Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-CT), Chair of the House Appropriations Committee and the Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee, delivered the following remarks at the Committee's markup of the fiscal year 2023 Labor, Health and Human Services, Education, and Related Agencies bill:

“Before we begin our final day of full committee markups this year, I first want to take a moment to recognize my partner and friend, Ranking Member Cole. Unfortunately Tom is not with us today, he’s recovering from Covid but we wish you really good health and a quick and easy recovery. I want to say a thank you to you for your dedication and commitment to the American people, to your constituents, and to those served by this bill is admirable. You and I both believe deeply in the power of this institution to get things done and to be able to make a difference. And I would just say to you Congressman Cole that you know why you came to serve, and while we may differ in our approach to doing so, it has been a pleasure to work with you over the past seven years. We have passed bills and had some outstanding accomplishments.

“Let me also take a moment to thank Ranking Member Granger for your partnership, your leadership, and your commitment to the work of this committee as we make sure, as you help to make sure, that it works for all Americans where ever they are in this country. 

“I also want to thank my colleagues on the subcommittee on both sides of the aisle. Included in this bill are the critical priorities that will continue to improve the lives of working- and middle-class families. Not  possible without you all, all of you, your passion, your advocacy.

“It also would not have been possible without the nearly 16,000 requests that the Labor HHS subcommittee has from Democrats and Republicans. Especially impressive are the more than 1,300 Community Project Funding requests we included in the bill they will impact the lives of working- and middle-class families all over our nation. They are investments that go directly to our constituents and the, and the projects that matter to them.

“I am proud of the bill, which builds on the investments we made in  2022. We know that Americans are looking for a lifeline – that pay is not keeping up with inflation, hardworking Americans live paycheck to paycheck, women are having trouble reentering the workforce because they struggle to find good childcare, and good employment and education opportunities for people, they often feel unattainable for so many. And this bill gives them the lifeline they are looking for.

“We held nine hearings, we discussed the need for sustained investments in the social, emotional, and cognitive development of our students. We heard how to best address the teacher shortage that threatens student learning and success. And as we support Americans in every stage of their lives, we considered how to strengthen the independence, well-being, and the health of older Americans.

“We met to discuss The President’s budget for labor, for education, for the NIH, and other areas that we heard directly from our colleagues about the areas of interest to them and we heard from as many people as possible on their priorities from outside groups.

“The bill that I present this morning provides $242.1 billion in investments, an increase of 13 percent above 2022.

“It spports early childhood education and childcare. $7.2 billion for the Child Care and Development Block Grants, $12.4 billion for Head Start, and $350 million for Preschool Development Grants.

“We fund greater educational opportunity. $20.5 billion for Title I Grants to Local Educational Agencies, we strengthen federal support for public education and for high-poverty schools. We strengthen K-12 education, we support babies, children, and young adults with disabilities with $17.8 billion for Special Education programs.

“Education is a great equalizer but only when it is affordable and accessible which is why we commit ourselves to historically underserved students. The bill provides Minority Serving Institutions (MSIs), Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) and other under resourced institutions $1.1 billion to serve its students. Post-secondary education includes a $500 increase to the maximum Pell Grant, the foundation of our student aid system.

“We look to try to enhance our workforce, $11.8 billion for Employment and Training. We double funding for the Strengthening Community College Training Grants and dramatically increase funding for Registered Apprenticeships. Proud of the programs created by this Committee, it meets the growing demand for skilled workers and it includes those with significant barriers, it helps them to find good employment opportunities.

“We also protect our workers’ paychecks, and their benefits, and the health and safety of their workplaces $2.2 billion for worker protection agencies. $319 million for the National Labor Relations Board to ensure that workers have a voice in their workplace and to protect their rights to collectively bargain. We provide $139 million for the International Labor Affairs Bureau’s (ILAB) to protect against the most abusive labor practices abroad.

“Maintaining a strong workforce also requires investments in the public health. If the past two years have taught us anything, that making health care accessible and affordable for everyone keeps us all safer. 

“Therefore we have done $10.5 billion for the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), a $2 billion increase, to help them build their public health infrastructure, modernize public health data, develop emergency preparedness programs, and strengthen the public health workforce initiatives.

“At the same time, we make investments in the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA). $9.6 billion for HRSA, there we expand access to contraceptive care, maternal and child health, school based health centers, behavioral health workforce training, and the Ending HIV, and supporting ending the HIV Initiative.

“We strengthen the commitment to bio medical research with strong funding for the National Institute of Health. We provide the NIH with $47.5 billion, it’s an increase of $2.5 billion, we also include efforts for the Cancer Moonshot initiative, Alzheimer’s research, HIV/AIDS prevention and treatment, and Universal Flu Vaccine development. We also provide funding to deal with urgent health crises, maternal health, opioid misuse crises and we look to try to reduce the unacceptable ethnic and racial health disparities that impact underserved communities with an increase of $100 million for that research.

“With $2.75 billion to accelerate the pace of scientific breakthroughs. Mental health which was a big issue for the  subcommittee, we increased funding for the Substance Use and Mental Health Services, money to SAMHSA by $2.6 billion. That includes the  9-8-8 National Suicide Prevention Lifeline, mental health resources for children and recovery support services and opioid prevention and treatment.

“We address gun violence by increasing funding for gun violence prevention research at CDC and the NIH.

“In terms of public health emergency, the bill strengthens our support for women’s rights and women’s health and expands access to reproductive care, especially some of our most vulnerable women. It eliminates the discriminatory Hyde Amendment. It provides $500 million, an increase of $214 million, for Title X Family Planning programs. We will continue to advance equal treatment for women even as the Supreme Court ruling tries to take control of women’s health care decisions out of our hands.

“I want to conclude by thanking the staff for their hard work. From the majority side, thank you to Stephen Steigleder, and your team: Jennifer Cama, Jackie Kilroy, Laurie Mignone, Philip Tizzani, Cassie Boles, Kaia Greene, Alanna Paul, and Robert Baransaka. On the minority side: thank you to Susan Ross and Kathryn Salmon. And to the staff in my personal office, including Becky Salay, Jack Rayburn, Caitlin Peruccio, and Marie Gualtieri.

“With that, I would like to again say thank you to Ranking Member Cole and yield to his opening remarks.”

117th Congress