February 15, 2019
Today, U.S. Congressman Scott Peters (CA-52) released the following statement after voting to fund the government through the rest of Fiscal Year 2019, and President Trump announced he will declare a national emergency to build his multi-billion dollar wall, after Congress did not approve funds to do so. Declaring a national emergency gives the president broad authority to redirect funds Congress previously allocated to other projects. This announcement is expected to be subject to legal challenges.
“Today, Congress came together to do its most basic job: fund the government. While no deal is perfect, this bipartisan, bicameral effort is a compromise that provides many of the border security investments we actually need and keeps the government open for the rest of the fiscal year. It denied President Trump billions of dollars to build an expensive and ineffective wall. It also makes critical investments, like increased funding to mitigate and prevent future sewage spills along the Tijuana River, that are important to San Diego. My staff and I worked hard to ensure that the appropriators understood that border sewage, which hinders border patrol operations and Navy SEAL training, is a critical border security issue.
“President Trump’s retaliatory emergency declaration would subvert congressional budget authority and would hamper congressionally authorized programs and activities carried out by federal agencies.
“If the president declares an emergency every time he doesn’t get his way in spending bills, the budgeting power of Congress is eviscerated. Such an irresponsible, short-sighted, and reckless use of executive power is an affront to the Constitution of the United States. Republicans and Democrats must work together to uphold the rule of law as today’s vote proves the path to success is through bipartisanship,” said Rep. Peters.
San Diego priorities funded in this spending package include:
- $15 million for U.S.-Mexico border water infrastructure at the Tijuana River
- $564 million for screening equipment at border ports
- $113 million for air and water patrolling technology
- $12 billion to support the Coast Guard and bolster their fleets
- $30.5 million for the Family Case Management program
- $16.6 billion for disaster aid and future disaster preparedness
- $159 million for National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration Climate Research
- $8.1 billion for the National Science Foundation
- $3.4 billion for international refugee assistance
- $3.4 billion for Community Development Block Grants
- $40 million for Veterans Administration-Supportive Housing vouchers
- $3.95 billion for fire management under the Department of Interior and U.S. Forest Service
- Additional funding for inspections of Immigration and Customs Enforcement detention facilities