Congresswoman McCollum Applauds Bipartisan Work in Support of FY13 Military Construction – Veterans Affairs Appropriation
Washington, DC – Today, Congresswoman Betty McCollum (MN-DFL) joined her Democratic and Republican colleagues on the Military Construction – Veterans Affairs Appropriations Subcommittee in unanimously supporting the $71.7 billion fiscal year 2013 spending bill. The bill now moves to the full House Appropriations Committee for further consideration.
The annual spending bill included $10.6 billion for military construction, including $1.7 billion for military family housing, which reflects President Obama’s budget request. Also included was $547 million for upgrades and safety improvements at Defense education facilities both in the United States and overseas.
The Department of Veterans Affairs will receive $60.7 billion for fiscal year 2013, an increase of $2.3 billion over 2012. The VA will receive $41.4 billion to provide medical services to more than six million patients. Included in these funds are $6.2 billion dedicated to mental health care services. Funds for suicide prevention, traumatic brain injury treatment, and homeless veterans’ services, including housing and job training, are also included in the bill. The bill contains $54.5 billion in advance fiscal year 2014 funding for the VA medical services, which will ensure that our veterans have full and continued access to their health care needs.
“America has a debt to pay for the service and sacrifices our veterans have made for all of us. The funding provided in this bill is absolutely essential to provide the services and support to meet the needs of Iraq and Afghan war veterans, as well as those who served in Vietnam, Korea, and World War II,” Congresswoman McCollum said. “I commend Subcommittee Chairman Culberson and Ranking Member Bishop for their leadership in advancing this important legislation. This bill is an important example of a bipartisan success in which the needs of our veterans come first.”
Congresswoman Betty McCollum serves on the House Appropriations and Budget Committees.