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Public Statements

Department of Defense, Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act, 2013

Floor Speech

By:
Date:
Location: Washington, DC

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Mr. SERRANO. I thank the ranking member.

As the ranking member of the Financial Services and General Government Appropriations Subcommittee, I wanted to outline several areas of concern in this section of the bill. Several agencies under the jurisdiction of the subcommittee requested vital changes to their fiscal year 2013 budget to help them address pressing needs and to blunt the impact of the sequester. Unfortunately, all of these changes were rejected by the other side.

For instance, no additional money is provided to the Securities and Exchange Commission to continue the implementation of the Dodd-Frank legislation. We need a strong cop on the beat to prevent financial misbehavior, and this bill does not help in this regard.

Under this bill, no additional money is provided to the IRS to help them catch tax cheats or to help Americans with questions on their tax forms. Moreover, no additional money is provided to help the IRS administer new tax credits under the Affordable Care Act, which is something that will only lead to more confusion; and once again, Republicans are attempting to extend the Federal employee pay freeze for the rest of the year.

Had we had a full omnibus bill--and I think, with a little bit of work, we could have had such a bill--we could have helped address many of these concerns.

Unfortunately, this CR is inadequate to the needs of our Federal Government and to the American people, and does not provide all agencies with the needed flexibility to best deal with the sequester. For that and other reasons, I urge opposition to this bill.

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