The House Appropriations Committee today approved the fiscal year 2014 Energy and Water Development, and Related Agencies Appropriations bill. The legislation provides annual funding for national defense nuclear weapons activities, the Army Corps of Engineers, various programs under the Department of Energy, and other related agencies.
The bill totals $30.4 billion -- a cut of $2.9 billion below the fiscal year 2013 enacted level and $4.1 billion below the President's request. This level is approximately $700 million below the level caused by sequestration.
"This bill reflects the difficult but crucial balance between fiscal responsibility, and essential infrastructure and security programs. In this austere budget year, we must make choices -- we can't have it all. This bill gets back to the basics -- protecting our national defense, and investing in the infrastructure that is the foundation of a thriving American economy and critical to the safety of our people," Chairman Rogers said.
Energy and Water Subcommittee Chairman Rodney Frelinghuysen also commented on the importance of the bill:
"This is a fiscally conservative bill that funds critical national security, jobs, and infrastructure programs." Chairman Frelinghuysen said. "In a challenging fiscal environment, we have to prioritize funding, and the Subcommittee chose to address the readiness and safety of the nation's nuclear stockpile and to invest in critical infrastructure projects to protect lives and property and support economic growth."
The following amendments to the bill were adopted by the full committee today:
Rep. Frelinghuysen -- The manager's amendment makes technical and non-controversial changes to the bill and report. The amendment was adopted on a voice vote.
Rep. Alexander -- The amendment adds report language requiring the Department of Energy to report on its plans to address the backlog of natural gas export applications and to encourage the timely completion of the approval process. The amendment was adopted on a voice vote.
Rep. Graves -- The amendment prohibits funding for the Army Corps of Engineers to enforce a ban on firearms on Corps land, as long as the possession of the firearm is in compliance with state law. The amendment was adopted on a vote of 32-17.
Rep. Lee -- The amendment adds report language expressing a "sense of Congress" that legislation should not be passed that "increases poverty in the U.S." The amendment was adopted on a voice vote.
Rep. Aderholt -- The amendment prohibits funds for the Bureau of Reclamation to bar the use of certain pipe materials in projects if certain corrosion control standards are met. The amendment was adopted on a voice vote.
The bill was approved by the full committee on a vote of 28-21.
For the text of the bill and report, please visit: http://appropriations.house.gov/UploadedFiles/BILLS-113HR-FC-AP-FY2014-AP00-EnergyWater.pdf and http://appropriations.house.gov/uploadedfiles/hrpt-113-hr-fy2014-energywater.pdf