WASHINGTON, DC –Congressman Steny H. Hoyer (MD-5) released the following statement today after the House passed H.R. 83, the Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act of 2015, which will fund the federal government through September 2015 and prevent a government shutdown:
“Last night, Democrats and Republicans worked together to fund the government and prevent another government shutdown. This was not a perfect bill. I had serious concerns with two controversial provisions, and I believe we should have funded the Department of Homeland Security for the entire year. However, there are several provisions that benefit the Fifth District, including funding for military construction at the Atlantic Test Range at Pax River and the Advanced Energetics Research Laboratory at Indian Head and language to ensure that Pax River’s mission isn’t undermined by the proposed wind energy project in Somerset County. I was also proud to secure $10 million in funding for a pilot program that would help Department of Defense labs and research facilities partner with local non-profit technology incubators to meet national security needs and diversify local economies.
“Additionally, I was pleased that this bill includes funding for NASA Goddard Space Flight Center in the Fifth District. It also takes steps to protect the Chesapeake Bay and its tributaries by providing funds for nutrient and sediment removal and oyster recovery, and the legislation makes investments in Metro and the Port of Baltimore. Finally, the bill includes a provision to ensure that veterans in Maryland will not be excluded from the new Veterans Choice health program. While I would have liked to have seen changes to this bill, Congress has a responsibility to ensure that the government remains open and can serve the people we were elected to represent.”