Press Releases

WASHINGTON, DC -- U.S. Rep. Harold "Hal" Rogers applauds passage of a second federal funding package for fiscal year 2019, including critical funding for Defense and Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education, including clear benefits for Kentucky. It also provides a Continuing Resolution to fund the rest of the federal government's discretionary programs through December 7, 2018.

The legislation provides funding for the 21st Century Cures Act and landmark support to combat the nation's deadly drug abuse crisis, which has been so prevalent in Southern and Eastern Kentucky. It includes the largest pay raise for U.S. troops in nine years and strengthens our defense with modernized equipment, such as new aircraft for our National Guard. 

The comprehensive bill also boosts school safety measures, enhances workforce development opportunities and makes funding available for the victims of Hurricane Florence. 

Speaker Ryan selected Rogers to serve on the House-Senate conference committee to finalize the funding package before the end of fiscal year 2018.

"This legislation provides the funding and stability necessary to defend American interests and values around the world – including a well-deserved pay raise for the men and women in uniform who serve bravely under our flag," said Rogers, who spoke on the House Floor urging its passage. "It also provides additional life-saving resources and research for those suffering with cancer, opioid addiction, and other diseases. I am proud of the work of this committee to send these important appropriations bills to the President on time."  

The federal funding package totals $852.4 billion and now moves on to the White House for approval. 

Last Friday, President Trump signed the first congressionally-approved funding package, including Energy and Water, Military Construction and Veterans Affairs, and Legislative Branch operations throughout the upcoming fiscal year. 



The FY19 Defense bill continues to rebuild our military, and is fully consistent with the President’s National Defense Strategy and Nuclear Posture Review. It prioritizes readiness, taking care of our service members and their families, and ensuring that the military has the capabilities it needs to fight and win our nation’s wars. This legislation gives the Defense Department the stability and clarity it needs by providing its full appropriation before the end of the fiscal year for the first time in more than twenty years.

  • Overall Defense Spending - This bill provides $674.4 billion for the Department of Defense, $17 billion more than FY18.  This includes $67.9 billion for Overseas Contingency Operations, ensuring that the men and women in uniform overseas have the tools they need to be successful. 

  • Taking Care of Soldiers - The bill includes a 2.6% pay raise for our troops—the largest pay raise in nine years. It also provides the funding for 16,400 additional service members, so the military has the capacity to respond to global threats.  

  • Combating Global Threats - The bill funds our ongoing operations against the Islamic State in Iraq and Syria (ISIS) and supports increased US military presence in European nations being threatened by Russian aggression through the European Deterrence Initiative. It also provides critical support to our key allies, such as Israel, Ukraine and Jordan, to resist aggression. 

  • Readiness and Training - The bill supports key readiness programs that will prepare our troops for combat and peacetime missions, including flight time and battle training, equipment and facility maintenance, and base operations.

  • Health Care & Research - The bill provides $34 billion for the Defense Health Program, which provides comprehensive care for our active duty troops, their families, and retirees. It also funds critical research for many health issues which affect our service members, including several forms of cancer, traumatic brain injuries, and psychological health.

  • National Guard Counter-Drug - The bill includes $232 million for the National Guard Counter-Drug Program and Counter-Drug Schools, an increase of $110 million from the President’s request. The Kentucky National Guard Counter-Drug program is among the best in the nation, and has eradicated millions of dollars of illegal drugs. 

Kentucky Defense Highlights

  • C-130J Hercules Aircraft - The bill provides funding for the procurement of eight C-130J aircraft for the Air National Guard. These eight, combined with the eight funded C-130Js in the FY17 and FY18 bills, will ensure that the National Guard has the best possible aircraft to accomplish their missions. The Kentucky Air National Guard is well-poised to receive some of these aircraft, and Congressman Rogers has been working with his colleagues in the delegation and the National Guard Bureau to secure these vital tools for our brave airmen.

  • UH-60 Blackhawk Helicopters - The bill provides funding for the procurement of 15 UH-60 Blackhawk helicopters specifically for the Army National Guard. Like the C-130Js, these helicopters will ensure that the National Guard has the best and newest helicopters available. The Kentucky Army National Guard is well-poised to potentially receive some of these aircraft. 

Landmark Funding to Combat Substance Abuse

This legislation provides a record $6.7 billion to fight, treat, and stop substance abuse, including a $584 million increase to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA). The total also includes: $1.8 billion for the Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant at SAMHSA; $475.5 million for comprehensive Prescription Drug Overdose Prevention grants at CDC; over $100 million to expand medication-assisted treatment (MAT) grants; and $70 million for drug treatment courts.

Rural Educational and Job Training Programs

  • Career and Technical Education (CTE) - The bill includes $1.92 billion for CTE, an increase of $120 million from FY18. This program is an essential component of the high school curriculum, and assists Kentucky schools in providing students with the necessary skills for a successful transition to the workforce. 

  • Job Corps - The bill includes $1.71 billion for the Job Corps. This funding will assist multiple Job Corps locations in Kentucky to continue to provide career and technical training to our nation’s youth, while allowing them to work towards a high school diploma or college credits. It also promotes a sense of community and family.

  • Federal TRIO programs - The bill includes $1.06 billion for TRIO programs, an increase of $50 million from FY18. The federal TRIO programs assist low-income individuals and first-generation college students as they progress through the academic pipeline.

  • GEAR UP - The bill includes $360 million for GEAR UP, an increase of $10 million from FY18. This grant program is designed to increase the number of low-income students who enter and succeed in postsecondary education. It targets students at an early age and provides scholarships and incentives to excel in their studies.

  • Training and Employment Services - The bill provides $3.5 billion, an increase of $200 million from FY18. This increase in funding will help support crucial apprenticeship, employment training, and trade adjustment programs.

  • Veterans Employment and Training Services - The bill includes $300 million, an increase of $5 million from FY18. This targeted funding will specifically provide veterans the tools they need to find and maintain careers after their service.

  • 21st Century Learning Centers - The bill provides $1.22 million, which will allow community learning centers to provide academic enrichment opportunities during non-school hours for children, particularly students who attend high-poverty and low-performing schools. 

  • Federal Work Study program - The bill provides $1.13 billion for this program, which provides funds for part-time employment to help needy students finance the heavy cost of higher education. 

  • Promise Neighborhoods - The bill includes $78.2 million, which will provide grants to schools and nonprofits to help ensure that children who grow up in distressed regions have access to great schools and community support.

Other Community and Economic Development Programs

  • Community Services Block Grant (CSBG) program - The bill includes$725 million, a $10 million increase, for the CSBG program. These grants increase self-sufficiency, living conditions, and lessen poverty in low-income areas.

  • Head Start - The bill includes more than $10 billion, a $200 million increase, for Head Start. This funding will allow for the implementation of additional school readiness programs for children younger than 5 from low-income families.

  • Child Care and Development Block Grant - The bill includes nearly $5.3 billion, a $50 million increase, for this program. This is the primary federal funding source for child care subsidies to help low-income, working families, access child care services.

  • Community Economic Development Grants - The bill provides $19.8 million for this grant program, which creates sustainable businesses and employment opportunities in low-income areas.

Provisions to Promote Rural Health and Medical Research

  • Rural Health Programming - The bill provides extensive funding for rural health, including nearly $317.8 million in funding – a $27 million increase – for rural health promotion, research, and telehealth programs. It also includes $25.3 million for the National Diabetes Prevention Program at CDC, which works to prevent or delay type-2 diabetes.

  • Groundbreaking Research - The bill achieves a substantial $2 billion increase, for a total of $39 billion, for the world’s largest biomedical research agency, the National Institutes of Health (NIH). This includes a $500 million increase, totaling nearly $1.3 billion, dedicated to opioid addiction, development of opioid alternatives, pain management, and addiction treatment. It also includes a $425 million increase dedicated to Alzheimer’s research, bringing the total to more than $2.3 billion.

Pro Coal Language

  • Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA) - The bill provides $10.537 million for state training grants, and ensures that the funds are used to help coal operators manage the costs associated with the expensive equipment necessary to comply with the MSHA Dust Rule.  The bill also expresses concern that the level of MSHA inspectors far exceeds the number that is required to ensure the safe operation of existing domestic coal mines, and directs the agency to take action, including reductions in force if necessary, to ensure sufficient industry oversight that does not exceed statutory and regulatory requirements.

Other Provisions

  • Continuing Resolution - The bill includes a Continuing Resolution that funds all Federal agencies not funded by an already-enacted appropriations bill through December 7, 2018 (Interior & Environment, Financial Services and General Government, Transportation-Housing and Urban Development, Agriculture, Homeland Security, State and Foreign Operations, & Commerce, Justice and Science).  

Minibus #2 Floor Speech
To watch Congressman Rogers' full speech on the House Floor in support of the legislation, click here