Rep. Sewell Statement on Passage of Two-Year Funding Bill
WASHINGTON, D.C. – On February 9, 2018, the House passed bipartisan legislation to fund the government for two years, including increased funding for military and domestic programs, reauthorization of Community Health Centers, safety-net hospital payments, rural ambulance reimbursements, home visiting programs, foster care reform, infrastructure funding, disaster relief, funding for efforts to address the opioid crisis, and more. Congresswoman Terri A. Sewell (D-AL) voted for the bipartisan deal when it passed the House.
“Today’s bipartisan budget deal was not perfect, but it takes important steps towards tackling some of our nation’s biggest challenges and it provides needed certainty to our Armed Forces and federal agencies,” said Rep. Terri Sewell. “This deal raises both defense and non-defense funding, providing critical resources to domestic programs like Head Start and for our men and women in uniform. For our rural hospitals, this bill provides relief by restoring Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) payments, supporting rural ambulance services, and extending other Medicare programs. For Alabama families, the bill extends funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) through 2028 and strengthens the Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) Program. And for every community impacted by the opioid epidemic, this bill dedicates another $6 billion to our fight to end the crisis.”
“Likewise, I will hold Speaker Ryan accountable to the promise he made on the House floor to find a bipartisan solution to the DACA program. During debate, Speaker Ryan acknowledged that although today’s bill does not restore the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) Program, he is committed to “bring a solution to the floor, one that the president will sign.” DREAMers are our neighbors, coworkers, students, and military service members, and they deserve the opportunity to stay in the country they call home. I will fight to hold Speaker Ryan to his word, and to pass a bipartisan solution for our DREAMers.”
Rep. Sewell is a lead sponsor of several legislative initiatives included in the two-year funding agreement. The deal includes a measure which increases subsidies for rural ambulances for the next five years, a bipartisan bill which Rep. Sewell led last year. The funding agreement also includes expanded supplemental benefits to meet the needs of chronically ill Medicare Advantage enrollees, updates to the MIECHV program, and improvements to foster care licensing standards, all of which Rep. Sewell introduced as legislation in 2017.
Rep. Terri A. Sewell (D-AL) is serving her fourth term representing Alabama’s 7th Congressional district. She sits on the House Permanent Select Committee on Intelligence and was recently appointed to the powerful House Ways and Means Committee. Sewell is a Chief Deputy Whip and serves on the prestigious Steering and Policy Committee of the Democratic Caucus. She is also a member of the Congressional Black Caucus, and serves as Vice Chair of the Congressional Voting Rights Caucus, and Vice Chair of Outreach for the New Democrat Coalition.