Press Release

New Defense Plan Includes Rep. Cuellar’s Contributions

House of Reps. Passes Defense Appropriations Bill with Provisions for National Guard

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WASHINGTON, March 8, 2017 | Victoria Glynn ((202) 340-9148) | comments
This afternoon, the full U.S. House of Representatives passed a Defense Appropriations bill for Fiscal Year 2017 with several key portions from Rep. Henry Cuellar. He supported National Guard programs to fight drug trafficking, conduct surveillance on the southern border, and collaborate with foreign militaries.

“National security issues touch my border district directly,” said Congressman Henry Cuellar. “That’s why I fought to fund National Guard programs that provide surveillance on the border, and fight transnational threats like drug trafficking.”

“Defense is a bipartisan issue, and our subcommittee was able to find common ground defending national security and supporting our troops,” he continued. “It’s also our duty to spend taxpayer money responsibly. These smart budget choices will support our troops and improve national security.”

Major items advanced by Rep. Cuellar include:

• $234 million for the National Guard Counterdrug Program, which fights drug trafficking

• $8 million for the National Guard State Partnership, a more than 20-year program allowing our National Guardsmen to teach and learn from their international counterparts

• $19,000,000 for Operation Phalanx, a National Guard program which conducts aerial surveillance on our southern border

The bill provides $577.9 billion in total, which is $5.2 billion more than the enacted level for Fiscal Year 2016. It fully funds a 2.1% pay raise for members of the military, and increases Overseas Contingency Operations (OCO)/Global War on Terrorism (GWOT) funding by $3.2 billion over current levels. It also allocates $125 million for traumatic brain injury and psychological health research.
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