Chairman Quigley Statement at Full Committee Markup of Fiscal Year 2022 Financial Services and General Government Funding Bill

2021-06-29 13:30

Congressman Mike Quigley (D-IL), Chair of the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Subcommittee, delivered the following remarks at the Appropriations Committee's markup of the fiscal year 2022 Financial Services and General Government bill:

“Today the Committee will mark up the fiscal year 2022 bill.  In a moment I’ll talk about the mark itself, but first I would like to thank staff on both sides for their efforts in drafting this bill and preparing us for this markup.

“On the majority staff of the committee that includes Laura, Marybeth, Elliot, Aalok, Parker, and Matt. And for the minority, John Martens.

“I want to thank my colleague, Mr. Womack, for his hard work and collaboration on this bill. I know we may not agree on everything, but I appreciate his partnership in developing the best possible bill during this challenging time.

“I’d also like to thank the Chair of the Full Committee, Ms. DeLauro, for her tremendous leadership and stewardship of this Committee, as well as the Committee’s distinguished Ranking Member Ms. Granger.

“The agencies and programs under the jurisdiction of the Financial Services and General Government subcommittee are uniquely varied.

“Each one plays an important role in the functioning of our government, whether in terms of core services or in relation to government responsiveness, transparency, and efficiency.

“The subcommittee was able to hold a full hearing schedule this year, though due to the pandemic these hearings were virtual. In these hearings we were able to explore issues facing agencies funded in this bill so that we were able to have an informed conversation about their appropriations.

“The mark recommends $29 billion.  This is an increase of $4.8 billion above the comparable fiscal year 2021 level.

“The bill includes $13.6 billion for the IRS—an increase of $1.7 billion above fiscal year 2021 and a bold first step toward restoring the significant cuts this agency has suffered over almost a decade. This much needed investment will support more effective and efficient enforcement activities that equally address taxpayers in all tax brackets. This funding will also support better customer service by reducing wait times and increasing assistance to those trying to navigate the complex tax code.

“Notably, the bill includes $330 million for Community Development Financial Institutions, which is $60 million above the fiscal year 2021 level. I’ve long been a supporter of CDFIs, which provide critical resources to underserved communities.

“In addition, the bill provides $324 million for the Small Business Administration’s Entrepreneurial Development Programs—which is $52 million above the fiscal year 2021 level. These grant programs provide much needed and targeted assistance to small businesses to expand and create additional jobs.

“The bill includes significant funding for the General Services Administration, including a significant investment to combat climate change.  A new 300 million dollar Electric Vehicles Fund will both replace vehicles in the GSA Fleet with electric vehicles and build electrical vehicle infrastructure. The bill also provides $100 million for GSA to manage climate change risks and safeguard Federal real property, along with over $1 billion to modernize and improve the GSA real property portfolio by reducing their climate impact and improving resiliency.

“The bill also includes funding for programs to combat the opioid epidemic under the Office of National Drug Control Policy to ensure this crisis receives the highest level of federal attention it deserves.

“Specifically, $300 million is included for the High Intensity Drug Trafficking Areas Program—an increase of $10 million above fiscal year 2021—and the Drug-Free Communities Program is funded at $110 million.

“In lead up to the 250th anniversary, in 2026, of our nation’s founding, the bill includes much needed funding for modernization of the National Archives building, which houses the Declaration of Independence, the Constitution, and the Bill of Rights. These funds will be used to enhance security efforts and visitor experience to the Archives.

“The bill includes $8.15 billion in discretionary appropriations for the Judicial Branch—an increase of $432 million over fiscal year 2021—to fund protective services and physical security needs in courthouses and ensure the continued operations of the Federal Judiciary.  

“The bill also increases funding for agencies that protect everyday consumers and retail investors—including the Consumer Product Safety Commission, the Federal Trade Commission, and the Securities and Exchange Commission—agencies that are relatively small but absolutely essential. 

“Finally, I’d like to take a moment to highlight an issue that has been a priority of mine—election security. States are on the front lines of protecting our elections from foreign attacks, and it is our responsibility to support these efforts.

“The bill before us today includes $500 million for payments to States to help them meet the challenge of ensuring the real security and integrity of American elections. This represents our continued commitment to long-term funding for election security. I urge all my colleagues to join me in advancing this critical investment.

“The bill also includes $22.8 million for the Election Assistance Commission—a 34 percent increase above fiscal year 2021—to support State and local election officials on all aspects of election administration and ensure reliable, secure, and accessible elections.

“The bill also takes seriously the broader cyber threat to this country. It provides $15 million for a new Office of the National Cyber Director in the Executive Office of the President to help coordinate Federal cybersecurity policy and strategy and makes strong investments throughout the bill in agency cybersecurity and IT modernization.

“I am also proud that the bill removes several longstanding policy riders that I consider to be harmful, including many that dictate to the District of Columbia how to manage its own affairs or spend its own money or that harm limit transparency in political spending.

“I am also very pleased with the many ways in which this bill stands to improve the lives of the American public, whether by improving their tax filing experience, protecting their financial investments, promoting small business creation, and combating drug trafficking and the climate crisis I could go on and on.

“So, I look forward to discussing these issues and more in today’s markup.

“I thank the Chair and I yield back.”

117th Congress