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Congress Passes Government Spending Bill


Last night, with a vote of 235 to 189, the House of Representatives passed H.R. 1, the “Full-Year Continuing Appropriations Act of 2011,” which funds the government through September 30, 2011.  Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke expressed her disapproval of the bill.

“The spending bill that was passed out of the House contained egregious spending cuts that weakens small businesses ability to access credit, threatens the education for our children, eliminates some very important services to disadvantage communities, and cuts jobs.  As our country fights to recover out one of the worst economic downturns since the Great Depression, it is irresponsible for House Republicans to pass any bill that essentially weakens our economy,” stated Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke.  “It is crucial that the 112th Congress focuses like a laser on President Obama’s call for our nation to out-innovate, out-educate, and out-build the rest of the world.”

 According to the Economic Policy Institute, our nation could lose nearly 800,000 private and public-sector jobs due to these spending cuts this year under this bill. New York is set to lose 11,803 jobs due to the cuts in transportation and infrastructure investments that Republicans have included.  H.R. 1 would:

  • Eliminate Title Ten Family Planning program, a program dedicated to providing the uninsured, and the underinsured with preventative healthcare and family planning services;
  • Reduce the funding for IDEA, leaving thousands of special education teachers and staff unemployed;
  • Reduce the Pell Grant scholarship maximum award by $845 from $5,550 to $4,705;
  • Eliminate job training opportunities provided through the Workforce Investment Act (WIA), cutting training for many unemployed people who need new skills to compete in the workplace;
  • End the Job Corps, preventing jobs and training opportunities for many young people; and much more.

“The truth of the matter is that we must address our national debt, but let us not forget that almost a decade of irresponsible tax policies, lax regulatory practices for big banks and fighting two wars overseas under the Bush Administration, turned our once record budget surpluses under the Clinton Administration, into record national debt.  As opposed to cutting vital programs that strengthen our economy, let us stop implementing the antiquated policies from the Bush Administration.  For example the cost of permanently extending the Bush era tax cuts for those who make 250,000 a year or more will cost us $700 billion over ten years,” added Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke.

“The American people deserve a Congress that is going to focus on the number one issue on people’s minds today… jobs.  As we await Senate action on this bill, I will continue to fight on behalf of the 11th Congressional District of New York, and the rest of the nation as the process of finalizing this budget continues,” concluded Congresswoman Yvette D. Clarke.