In addition to spending bill, Senate passed emergency assistance to Ukraine, the Violence Against Women Act and Senator Casey’s Stop Senior Scams Act
Washington, D.C. - Today, U.S. Senator Bob Casey (D-PA) announced the passage of a federal spending bill for Fiscal Year 2022. For the first time in more than a decade, the spending bill includes congressionally directed spending for community projects; Senator Casey secured $81.6 million for 63 projects across the Commonwealth.
“Today, Congress passed bipartisan legislation that will have far-reaching benefits across Pennsylvania. This bill invests in the economic growth of rural and urban areas, supporting vulnerable communities, small businesses and workers struggling to get back on their feet. Pennsylvania will receive tens of millions of dollars for community projects across the Commonwealth, from infrastructure improvements and conservation programs to investments in education and job training. The Commonwealth will soon see critically-needed funding for public health, including support for veterans and resources to combat the opioid crisis. I fought to ensure that this spending bill includes robust investments in services for seniors and people with disabilities, including my Stop Senior Scams Act,” said Senator Casey. “This bill improves the lives of Pennsylvanians by lowering costs for middle-class families, creating jobs and opportunities to build a better future and investing in communities often forgotten. I will keep fighting to deliver resources for families across the Commonwealth.”
In addition to the federal spending bill, the Senate also passed $13.6 billion in aid to Ukraine which will provide food, medicine, shelter, support for over two million refugees, resources to bolster Ukraine’s economy, and inject billions into military assistance.
The Senate also passed the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA), a three-decade old law which expired in 2019. VAWA aims to prevent domestic violence, dating violence, sexual assault and stalking by expanding protections and services for survivors, increasing training and resources for law enforcement and bringing perpetrators to justice.
The Senate also passed Senator Casey’s bipartisan Stop Senior Scams Act, which would establish a federal advisory group tasked with preventing scams targeting older Americans. In September, Casey held a hearing in the Senate Special Committee on Aging on how the pandemic created new opportunities for fraudsters to take advantage of seniors.
The federal spending bill included a number of Senator Casey’s priorities and programs important to Pennsylvania, including:
Senator Casey secured $81.6 million in funding for 63 projects across Pennsylvania. The projects include community revitalization, workforce development, critical infrastructure and resilience and projects that expand health care in the Commonwealth.
Descriptions of the 63 community projects can be found HERE.
Jobs and Economy
- Economic Development: The spending bill increases funding for community economic development through the Economic Development Administration. These funds create jobs and support communities as they adjust to economic change. The bill also provides funding for the Minority Business Development Agency to use in their work assisting minority-owned businesses across the Nation.
- Appalachian Regional Commission: Additionally, the spending bill increases funding for the Appalachian Regional Commission, which funds economic and community development efforts, including job training and infrastructure projects, throughout the Appalachian region in Pennsylvania.
- Rural Businesses: The spending bill increases funding for Rural Business programs. The largest increase is for Business and Industry loans to assist businesses in rural areas with loans to ensure they continue to thrive.
- Job Training: The spending bill increases funding for Registered Apprenticeship programs, community college training grants for in-demand jobs and Career and Technical Education to help Americans prepare for good-paying 21st century jobs.
Infrastructure and Housing
- Building on the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act: The spending bill provides an increase in funding of over $16 billion for the Department of Transportation. In addition to the investments coming to Pennsylvania from the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, the spending bill will include further funding for roads and highways, bridges, airports and transit. Amtrak also received a significant increase to support its vital passenger rail network.
- RAISE Grants: In addition to the $7.5 billion in funding provided for the program in the next five years in the Infrastructure Investment and Jobs Act, the spending bill includes funding for the Rebuilding American Infrastructure with Sustainability and Equity (RAISE) program. RAISE grants provide substantial funding to community transportation projects, including three projects last year in Johnstown, the Lehigh Valley and Philadelphia.
- High-Speed Internet for Rural Communities: In addition to the broadband funding in the infrastructure law, the spending bill includes funding for the ReConnect program, which provides high-speed internet to rural communities.
- Affordable Housing: The spending bill increases funding for programs that build and repair affordable housing, the Community Development Block Grant Program and programs that directly invest in distressed neighborhoods. It also contains continued support for housing choice vouchers and Project-Based Rental Assistance. Additionally, the spending bill increases funding for the Rural Housing Service, including funding designated for rural Rental Assistance.
- Child Care and Early Childhood Education: The spending bill increases funding for child care and early childhood education, including the Child Care and Development Block Grant, Head Start, Preschool Development Grants and the Child Care Access Means Parents in School program—which helps parents pursuing higher education degrees access child care on campus.
- Childhood Nutrition and Hunger: The spending bill includes funding to address childhood nutrition and hunger, including funding for school breakfast expansion grants and providing increased funding for the Summer Electronic Benefit Transfer program, which ensures vulnerable children have reliable access to food when school is out of session. The bill also provides funding under the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC) program to increase the benefits for fruits and vegetables purchases. Senator Casey is going to keep fighting to extend USDA school nutrition waivers, which are set to expire later this year.
- K-12 Education: The spending bill increases funding for K-12 education, including historic investments in Title I schools, which serve low-income children. The bill also invests in Individuals with Disabilities Education Act (IDEA) programs, allowing children with disabilities to learn alongside their peers.
Seniors and People with Disabilities
- Aging Services: The spending bill includes funding to help older adults through nutrition programs like Meals on Wheels, support for family caregivers and healthy aging activities. This bill provides funding for the Administration for Community Living’s Aging and Disability Services programs that enable older adults to remain active members of their communities.
- Disability Employment: The bill increases funding for disability employment services to help employers hire and support employees with disabilities. It also increases funding for vocational rehabilitation services to provide training for people with disabilities to prepare for and secure work.
- Research and Health Care for Developmental Disabilities, Chronic Health Conditions and Aging-Related Diseases: The spending bill provides the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) with funding to conduct research about birth defects, chronic health conditions and developmental disabilities. The CDC also uses these funds to inform the public about such conditions. This bill also increases funding for the promotion of research related to the causes, diagnoses, treatment and prevention of aging-related diseases through the National Institute on Aging.
Pennsylvania's Natural Resources and Environment
- Conservation: The spending bill includes funding for several programs to support Pennsylvania’s farmers and preserve the Commonwealth’s natural resources and outdoor spaces. The bill provides $904 million for Natural Resources Conservation Service (NRCS), Conservation Operations, as well as funding for the Grazing Lands Conservation Initiative, climate smart agriculture and the ongoing Soil Health Initiative.
- Abandoned Mine Land Economic Revitalization (AMLER): The spending bill includes increased funding for the AMLER Program, which reclaims abandoned mine land and spurs economic development in rural communities. Senator Casey led his colleagues in advocating for increased funding in the AMLER program in this bill.
- Chesapeake Bay Watershed: The bill also provides funding to clean up the Chesapeake Bay watershed, including nutrient and sediment removal grants, small watershed grants to control polluted runoff from urban, suburban and agricultural lands and funding for the Chesapeake WILD grant program.
- Energy Efficiency and Resilience: The bill also provides funding for the Weatherization Assistance Program to help Pennsylvanians protect their homes from natural disasters and funding for the State Energy Program, which supports state-led investments in energy efficiency and renewable energy technologies.
- Reducing Crime and Supporting At-Risk Youth: The spending bill includes funding for a new community violence intervention and prevention initiative aimed at reducing violent crime and gun violence, as well as increased local community funding to help keep at-risk youth out of the juvenile justice system through Incentive Youth Promise Grants for Local Delinquency Prevention Programs.
- Domestic Violence Support: The bill increases funding for the Family Violence and Prevention Services Program, which provides emergency shelter and other assistance to victims of domestic violence and their children. Senator Casey is leading efforts in the Senate to pass the Family Violence and Prevention Services Act reauthorization in Congress.
- Support for Local Law Enforcement and First Responders: The spending bill increases funding for local law enforcement, including grants to improve community-police relations. The spending bill also includes funding to train law enforcement to appropriately respond to situations when individuals are mentally ill or disabled.
- Medical Research: The spending bill provides increased funding for the National Institute of Health (NIH), the Nation’s premier institution for medical research that funds researchers across the Nation. NIH funding supports jobs in Pennsylvania’s biomedical research and life sciences industries and furthers lifesaving medical research. Senator Casey leads the annual appropriations letter calling for robust funding for NIH.
- Veterans and Servicemembers Health: The spending bill provides robust funding for the most pressing medical needs of our servicemembers and veterans, including strong support for programs addressing mental health, women’s health and sexual assault prevention and response.
- Funding for Scarlett’s Sunshine Act: The spending bill includes additional funding to implement provisions of Senator Casey’s Scarlett’s Sunshine Act to address gaps in our knowledge about sudden unexplained infant and childhood deaths through improved data collection.
- Opioid Crisis: The bill provides a $25 million increase in overall funding for State Opioid Response Grants to combat the opioid crisis. Pennsylvania’s share of the additional funding will flow through the state government to affected communities around the state.
For funding levels on specific programs, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.