Statement : Military Construction, Veterans Affairs, and Related Agencies

May 17, 2023 Statement
As part of the Republican’s Default on America bill they just passed, they included no protections for veterans funding, despite making promises their proposed cuts would not impact veterans. Verbal promises clearly mean nothing when they could have included these protections in law – ensuring veterans funding would not be subject to political funding battles – and they made the conscious choice not to do so. On top of that, Republicans voted to immediately rescind $2 billion for veterans for claims processing and appeals, healthcare both within and outside of VA, research, and education and training for veterans. The bill before us today continues the Republican’s disturbing trend that does not protect veterans.
May 17, 2023 Statement
We need to see all the bills so we can see the full picture of how these cuts will undoubtedly affect the brave men and women who fought for our country – and that we promised to take care of. So do not tell me that Republicans are fully funding veterans’ programs. The larger Republican agenda does nothing to protect veterans from their proposed cuts.
April 20, 2023 Statement
"Military Construction is so much more than just building bases. It’s providing modern, efficient facilities that can weather increasingly destructive natural disasters. It’s reducing our carbon footprint through energy resilience. It’s building child development centers so servicemembers don’t have to worry about the safety and security of their children. It’s remediating contaminants left behind by our Services, such as PFAS. It’s providing quality housing for our servicemembers and their families.We must continue the targeted investments we have made over the past several years in these areas to support our Airmen, Guardians, and their families the best way we can on this committee."
April 18, 2023 Statement
"The progress the Navy and Marine Corps makes towards improving the quality of life for our Sailors, Marines, and their families will undoubtedly help recruitment and retention efforts. That is why continued strong investments in these programs is essential and why I am pleased to see an improved budget request from the Navy and Marine Corps this year."
March 29, 2023 Statement
"Even if there’s a world where funding for veterans health care is held harmless, that would only further devastate the rest of the nondefense discretionary programs that veterans rely on outside of VA – like homelessness programs, job training and employment resources, and transportation resources."
March 23, 2023 Statement
"From mitigating the threat from earthquakes, providing safer housing for servicemembers and their families, strengthening our deterrent capabilities in the pacific, to cleaning up harmful substances like PFAS, there is much work that needs to be done in the year ahead. Military construction funding for the Army continues to be an important priority...I cannot stress enough the importance of the quality of life issues surrounding our servicemembers that we are responsible for on this committee. While I am proud of what we have been able to do these last four years, we have so much more to do, and I know all of us here agree with that. We cannot take our foot off the gas now, which is what Republican leadership is proposing to do."
February 28, 2023 Statement
"This hearing is a great opportunity to identify areas where we can do more to help those who protect us and defend this nation. It is imperative that we prioritize their wellbeing and guarantee their optimal readiness."