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Cole Supports Passage of the Further Continuing and Security Assistance Appropriations Act, 2017

December 8, 2016
Press Release
Washington, D.C. – Congressman Tom Cole (OK-04) released the following statement after the passage of the short-term Further Continuing and Security Assistance Appropriations Act, 2017 (Continuing Resolution), H.R. 2028, which passed by a vote of 326-96. This legislation prevents a government shutdown and will continue funding federal programs and agencies until April 28, 2017.
“Funding our federal government is perhaps the most basic responsibility of Congress. I’m pleased that we met this responsibility, and prevented another government shutdown,” said Cole. “I’d like to congratulate Chairman Hal Rogers and Ranking Member Nita Lowey for crafting an important appropriations measure and ensuring that critical programs and agencies have the resources they need to serve our citizens.
“I am also pleased that several adjustments were made to make sure important defense programs will continue to function without interruption, and that important healthcare initiatives in Oklahoma will continue support our Native American communities.
“While the government will be funded through April, this is certainly not an ideal way to run the government.  Congress could have, and should have, passed the necessary appropriations bills that would have funded the government through Fiscal Year 2017. Instead, we are essentially putting the government on auto-pilot without taking into consideration the changing needs and circumstances of each government agency.
“Rather than finishing its work, Congress is kicking the can down the road. I encourage my colleagues to proceed expeditiously in consideration of appropriations measures for the rest of Fiscal Year 2017 and for Fiscal Year 2018. I hope we can do a better job returning to regular order in the New Year, and get things done,” concluded Cole.
Of importance, the Continuing Resolution (H.R. 2028) will include:
  •           Maintains key defense programs to continue, including the KC-46A Tanker
  •           More than $9 billion for Overseas Contingency Funding (OCO) for overseas defense programs and military efforts against ISIS and terrorism
  •           $4.1 billion in emergency disaster relief for areas affected by severe weather and flood damage
  •           $872 million for the 21st Century Cures Act of 2016, comprehensive legislation that will provide support for medical research, drug approval and innovation at the National Institutes of Health
  •           Continuation of Federal Aviation Administration air travel operations and air safety programs
To read more about the Further Continuing and Security Assistance Appropriations Act, 2017, please click here.