House Releases $2.3 Trillion Government Spending and Virus Relief Bill

December 21, 2020 by Dan McCue
U.S. Capitol, Nov. 12, 2020. (Photo by Dan McCue)

WASHINGTON — House Appropriations Committee Chairwoman Nita Lowey, D-N.Y., released the text of a $2.3 trillion omnibus spending bill Monday afternoon consisting of all 12 fiscal year 2021 appropriations bills, $900 billion coronavirus relief, and other authorizations.

In addition to the COVID relief package, it includes $664.5 billion in domestics spending, and $740.5 billion in defense spending.

The legislation, a product of bipartisan, bicameral negotiations, is expected to be considered in the House later today.

“As I prepare to depart the House after 32 years of service, I could not be more pleased that we are concluding this Congress with a bipartisan agreement to provide the certainty of full-year funding for all of government and urgently-needed coronavirus relief to save lives and livelihoods,” Lowey said. 

“Because of the leadership of Congressional Democrats, this spending agreement contains funding increases for critical priorities and strong emergency relief to crush the virus and put more money in people’s pockets,” she said.

The more than $1.4 trillion fiscal year 2021 appropriations omnibus furthers House Democrats’ commitment to investing for the people with substantial increases to non-defense spending alongside small increases for defense-related programs.

The appropriations provisions include measures aimed at providing pathways to better schools, expanding access to housing, and tackling food insecurity.

They also fund local preparedness grants, expand access for rural communities through investments in broadband, and provide dedicated funding to protect the environment and combat climate change.

In addition to the fiscal year 2021 appropriations bills, the spending package contains $900 billion in emergency coronavirus relief to protect the lives and livelihoods of the American people. Among its provisions, the bill provides:

  • Billions in urgently needed funds to accelerate the free and equitable distribution of safe vaccines to crush the virus;
  • $13 billion increase in SNAP and child nutrition benefits to help relieve the COVID hunger crisis;
  • A new round of direct payments worth up to $600 per adult and child;
  • A $300 per week UI enhancement for Americans out of work;
  • $82 billion in funding for colleges and schools and $10 billion for child care assistance to help get parents back to work and keep child care providers open; and
  • An additional $3.36 billion for a total of $4 billion for GAVI, the international vaccine alliance, recognizing that we are not truly safe until the whole world is safe from the coronavirus.

The spending package also includes a number of other matters outside the Appropriations Committee’s jurisdiction and negotiated by bipartisan, bicameral leadership.

Speaking on the House floor shortly before the spending bill was voted on, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi emphasized the $900 billion allocated to coronavirus relief is but “a first step” and that more will have to be done in collaboration with the incoming Biden administration to “crush the virus.”

Pelosi also made clear in her lengthy remarks that negotiations over the current bill were often difficult and that many things each side wanted never made the final cut.

“I look forward to strong bipartisan vote today on this legislation,” she said near the end of her remarks. “Respecting it for what it does, not judging it for what it does not.”

The text of the spending package, H.R. 133, is available here.

A division-by-division summary of the appropriations provisions is here. A division-by-division summary of the coronavirus relief provisions is here. A division-by-division of the authorizing matters is here.

One-page fact sheets on critical Democratic priorities included among the appropriations provisions, the coronavirus relief provisions, and the authorizing matters are here, here, and here respectively.

Congress

Hoyer Calls for 'Modernizing' House Approach to Staff Pay, Benefits
Congress
Hoyer Calls for 'Modernizing' House Approach to Staff Pay, Benefits
April 16, 2021
by TWN Staff

WASHINGTON - House Majority Leader Steny Hoyer told a Select Committee on Thursday that it's high time Congress was brought into alignment with the best practices of the private sector when it comes to employee recruitment and retention. Appearing before the House Select Committee on the... Read More

35 States at Extreme Risk of Partisan Gerrymandering
In The States
35 States at Extreme Risk of Partisan Gerrymandering
April 16, 2021
by TWN Staff

Thirty-five states are at extreme or high risk of partisan gerrymandering, according to an in-depth report by the nonpartisan RepresentUs organization. The Gerrymandering Threat Index rates all 50 states, and its authors argue their findings underscore the urgent need to pass the redistricting reforms within the... Read More

Biden Gets Mixed Response to Affordable Housing Stimulus Plan
Congress
Biden Gets Mixed Response to Affordable Housing Stimulus Plan
April 15, 2021
by Tom Ramstack

WASHINGTON -- A Biden administration plan to increase affordable housing drew sharp warnings from Republicans about adding to the U.S. budget deficit during a congressional hearing Wednesday. Meanwhile, Democrats said the $213 billion plan for affordable housing more equitably distributes wealth. They largely disagreed it would... Read More

DC Statehood to Go Before Full House Next Week
Congress
DC Statehood to Go Before Full House Next Week
April 15, 2021
by TWN Staff

WASHINGTON - A bill that would make the District of Columbia the 51st state made it out of the House Oversight and Reforms Committee on Wednesday, and will come up for a vote in the full House next week. Last June, the House passed legislation that... Read More

Rep. Kevin Brady Won't Seek Reelection
Congress
Rep. Kevin Brady Won't Seek Reelection
April 14, 2021
by Dan McCue

WASHINGTON - Rep. Kevin Brady, R-Texas, the top Republican on the powerful House Ways and Means Committee, announced Wednesday that he will not seek reelection next year after serving since 1997. "This term, my 13th, will be the last," Brady said during remarks before the Woodlands... Read More

Biden Wants Infrastructure Deal, But GOP Doubts Persist
Congress
Biden Wants Infrastructure Deal, But GOP Doubts Persist

WASHINGTON (AP) — President Joe Biden wants Congress to know he's sincere about cutting a deal on infrastructure, but Republican lawmakers have deep-seated doubts about the scope of his proposed package, its tax hikes and Biden's premise that this is an inflection point for the U.S.... Read More

News From The Well
scroll top