FY17 CJS Full Committee Markup Bill Summary
COMMERCE, JUSTICE, SCIENCE, AND RELATED AGENCIES
FISCAL YEAR 2017 APPROPRIATIONS BILL
Full Committee Mark: April 21, 2016
Washington, D.C. – The fiscal year 2017 Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies (CJS) Appropriations Bill provides a total of $56.3 billion in discretionary funding, $563 million more than fiscal year 2016 and $1.6 billion more than the President’s request.
The CJS bill invests in a wide range of critical programs that affect the lives of all Americans. The bill provides $29.2 billion, $156 million more than fiscal year 2016, for the Department of Justice (DOJ) to keep America safe from criminals and terrorists. The National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) is funded at $19.3 billion to support key priorities like commercial crew transportation for astronauts to the International Space Station, Earth Science, satellite servicing, NASA’s next missions beyond low-Earth orbit and the James Webb Space Telescope to keep the United States first in astronomy. The Department of Commerce receives $9.3 billion to warn Americans about severe weather, promote American businesses and exports, protect American ideas, foster economic development, enable sustainable development of ocean resources, and create cybersecurity standards to protect dot-mil, dot-gov and dot-com.
The Committee adopted Senator Mikulski’s amendment to protect medical marijuana patients and doctors in states where medical marijuana is legal.
U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-Md.), Ranking Member of the Commerce, Justice, Science, and Related Agencies Appropriations Subcommittee and Vice Chairwoman of the Appropriations Committee, issued the following statement:
“I would like to thank Senator Shelby. I’m pleased to have worked with him on this bill – he is a true partner. The CJS bill is first and foremost a public safety bill, funding priorities that keep America safe and help America create jobs through science and innovation as well as trade and economic development. It includes funding for law enforcement agencies that protect us from criminals, scammers, terrorists, predators and online hackers, and for weather prediction and warnings so we can get out of the way when severe weather threatens lives and property. The bill also addresses the deadly heroin epidemic that is affecting all of our communities, funding enforcement and treatment and prevention efforts. Finally, this bill puts money in the federal checkbook for research and development, because innovation today leads to American jobs and products tomorrow.”
Key Points & Highlights
- Heroin Crisis. Heroin use continues to ravage communities across the nation as it is often an inexpensive substitute for prescription pills, costing as little as $10 a hit. This bill provides a total of $132 million to help our communities combat heroin and illegal distribution of opioids. In terms of enforcement, the anti-heroin task force program within the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Office is provided $10 million and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) is provided their full request level of $12.5 million for four new heroin enforcement squads. The bill also provides funding for Justice Department grant programs that provide prevention and treatment opportunities including residential drug treatment ($14 million), prescription drug monitoring ($14 million) and drug courts ($43 million).
- Law Enforcement. Federal law enforcement agencies within the DOJ including the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), U.S. Marshals Service, DEA and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives are funded at a total of $13.6 billion, $202 million more than fiscal year 2016. There is also an additional $2.4 billion in grants to help state and local law enforcement fight crime, keep children safe and help victims, including $187 million in COPS Hiring which will place another 1,000 police officers on our neighborhood streets.
- Addressing Violence Against Women. The bill contains $481.5 million, the highest funding level ever, for grants provided by the Office on Violence Against Women. Funding is provided for multiple competitive and formula grant programs that support training for police officers and prosecutors, state domestic violence and sexual assault coalitions, rape prevention programs, lethality assessment and homicide reduction initiatives, domestic violence hotlines, and women’s shelters and transitional housing support services. A new program for fiscal year 2017, the Domestic Violence Firearm Lethality Reduction Initiative, is fully funded at the request level of $4 million. This initiative will improve the response of law enforcement and the court system in addressing the safety of domestic violence victims in cases involving firearms. The bill also provides $45 million for a competitive grant program to support multi-disciplinary community response teams tasked with developing and implementing comprehensive reform regarding sexual assault, including reducing the backlog of rape kits at law enforcement agencies.
- Strengthening Police-Community Relations. Strong partnerships between the police and the communities they protect reduce crime, ensure that citizens' civil rights are protected and improve officer safety. The bill provides a total of $121 million across DOJ programs that work towards strengthening this important relationship. The Community Trust Initiative is again funded at $70 million for fiscal year 2017, which includes funding for law enforcement to purchase body cameras, the Justice Reinvestment Initiative, the Byrne Criminal Justice Innovation program and a new program for fiscal year 2017, the National Crime Statistics Exchange (NCS-X). Approximately 6,300 of the nation’s roughly 18,000 law enforcement agencies participate in the National Incident-Based Reporting System (NIBRS). NCS-X will help additional law enforcement agencies add their detailed crime statistics, like officer related shootings, into NIBRS so that the DOJ will be able to produce nationally-representative estimates of crimes known to the police that can be disaggregated by victim-offender characteristics, the circumstances of the event, victim-offender relationship, and other important elements of criminal events. When completed, nationally-representative NIBRS data will increase the nation’s ability to monitor, respond to and prevent crime by allowing NIBRS to produce timely, detailed and accurate national measures of crime incidents.
- FBI Headquarters. $646 million is provided for the FBI’s new headquarters project, $466 million more than fiscal year 2016 and the same amount as the President’s request. Consolidating the Hoover Building and 13 leased buildings across the region into a new headquarters building is critical to having a modern FBI workforce take on 21st Century threats.
- NASA. This bill provides $19.3 billion for the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) which is $21 million above the fiscal year 2016 enacted level and $1 billion above the President’s discretionary request level. The bill supports key priorities like Earth Science, satellite servicing, astrophysics, heliophysics and NASA’s next missions beyond low-Earth orbit.
- NOAA Ships. The bill provides $75 million to complete a new survey vessel for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA). NOAA currently has 16 ships in its aging fleet, but that number will dwindle to eight vessels by 2028. To maintain its current oceanographic capacity, NOAA needs to build not one but eight additional vessels in the next two to four years, as construction takes eight to ten years per ship. These vessels enable NOAA to map the ocean floor, support weather forecasts, conduct oceanographic and climate research and improve ecosystem and fisheries management.
- National Institute of Standards and Technology. The bill provides an additional $10 million more than the fiscal year 2016 level for the National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST), for a total of $974 million. NIST research and grant programs develop measurements and standards for private sector innovation, help aspiring start-up companies commercialize new technologies, and provide technical and workforce development support to American manufacturers. Cybersecurity industry partnerships and research receive $75.7 million in funding, including $33 million for Maryland’s National Cybersecurity Center of Excellence. The bill also provides $25 million for the National Network of Manufacturing Institutes, $130 million for the Hollings Manufacturing Extension Partnership, and $60 million to continue the renovation and expansion of NIST’s Radiation Physics laboratories in Gaithersburg, MD.
- National Science Foundation. The National Science Foundation (NSF) is funded at $7.51 billion, $46 million above the fiscal year 2016 level. This funding includes $6.03 billion for NSF’s research and research facilities to support today’s scientists, engineers and technicians, and $880 million for NSF’s education and training programs to build tomorrow’s innovation workforce.
- Weather Satellites. This bill provides $383 million to continue construction of two new polar ‘follow-on’ satellites and $1.5 billion for NOAA’s legacy JPSS and GOES weather satellites. Polar satellites provide 85 percent of the data used to forecast the weather and are a vital component of Americans’ personal, property and economic security. One-third of U.S. GDP is affected by climate and weather, including farmers trying to protect livestock and crops, cities relying on energy from wind turbines and solar panels, and air travelers trying to get home safely and on time. In 2015 alone, the United States suffered ten major weather and climate events estimated to have cost more than $1 billion dollars each, and would have cost far more in lives and livelihoods without sufficient warning.
- Census Bureau. Funded at $1.52 billion, this bill supports needed testing and development for the Census Bureau. The 2010 Census cost nearly $13 billion, and the Bureau projects that repeating the same old paper-and-pencil Census in 2020 could cost more than $17 billion; however, new technologies like internet response have the potential to save more than $5 billion in 2020.
Mara Stark-Alcalá w/Appropriations: (202) 224-2667
Matt Jorgenson w/Mikulski: (202) 228-1122
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