FY 2018 Spending Bill Moves Forward
The House Appropriations Military Construction, Veterans Affairs and Related Agencies Subcommittee marked up and approved its FY2018 Military Construction and Veterans Affairs Appropriations bill, which will be sent onto the full House Appropriations Committee. The still unnumbered legislation meets the goals outlined by the White House to rebuild the military, provide funding to house, train and equip military personnel, provide housing and services to military families and help maintain base infrastructure. The bill also funds the Department of Veterans Affairs (VA).
In total, the legislation provides $88.8 billion in discretionary funding – $6 billion more than the fiscal year 2017 level. This includes $638 million in Overseas Contingency Operations funding, which includes funding for European Reassurance Initiative projects.
Within this total, funding for the VA is increased by $4 billion (5 percent) more than the fiscal year 2017 level, including funding to increase access to services for veterans, and to increase oversight and accountability within the agency.
Military construction is increased by $2.1 billion (25 percent) more than the FY2017 level, to provide resources to rebuild the military, prepare our service members to face existing and emerging threats and care for military families.
FRA will monitor this legislation to ensure adequate funding for military construction (barracks, child care centers etc.) and the VA. There will be special attention given to VA health care to ensure access and care for all beneficiaries.