Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart

Representing the 25th District of FLORIDA

Diaz-Balart Secures School Safety, Mental Health Funding in Legislation Headed to President’s Desk

Sep 26, 2018
Press Release

WASHINGTON ­­– Congressman Mario Diaz-Balart (FL-25), a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee, issued the following statement after the House approved H.R. 6157, the Department of Defense and Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations and Continuing Appropriations Act.

“The legislation funds critical programs that serve our communities and protect our national security. Over the last several months, I am humbled to have worked with my Southern Florida colleague, Rep. Ted Deutch, and Max Schachter, who tragically lost his son in Parkland. Together, I am proud that we successfully included $1.47 billion for mental health, training, and school safety in this bill. It provides educational and medical professionals with the proper tools to protect our children in the classroom, while ensuring access to vital mental health resources.

“The bill also fully funds the Department of Defense, so that we may continue to rebuild and improve our military might. It funds $148 billion for new equipment purchases and modernization, giving our troops the latest technology on the frontlines. The bill provides $606.5 billion to support base operations and a 2.6% pay raise for our troops, including those stationed at U.S. Southern Command and Homestead Air Reserve Base. I am proud to be a steadfast advocate for our men and women in uniform and will continue to fight for them as fight for our freedom. 

“I congratulate Speaker Ryan, Chairman Frelinghuysen, Subcommittee Chairwoman Granger, and Subcommittee Chairman Cole for their victory on this bill and a path towards returning to regular order. I look forward to continuing working with them and our Appropriations colleagues to quickly consider the remainder of our funding bills.”

As a senior member of the House Appropriations Committee, Diaz-Balart worked with his colleagues to secure the following funding the Department of Defense and Labor, Health and Human Services, and Education Appropriations and Continuing Appropriations Act:

  • $1.4 billion for mental health, training, and school safety, including:
    • $1.17 billion for school hardening measures through the Student Support and Academic Enrichment (SSAE) State Grants
    • $71 million for Project AWARE grants, which promote youth mental health and connect them to school-age services
  • $5.74 billion for the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Administration (SAMHSA)
  • $10.06 billion for early childhood education in low-income and rural areas through Head Start
  • $1.5 billion for State Targeted Response to the Opioid Crisis
  • $50 million for Infectious Disease Rapid Response Reserve Fund
  • $39.08 billion for the National Institutes of Health (NIH)
  • $6,195 in maximum award of Pell grants for students
  • $3.69 billion for Low Income Home Energy Assistance Program, to help low-income families with energy costs
  • $2.31 billion for Ryan White HIV/AIDS program
  • $675 million for Public Health Emergency Preparedness Cooperative Agreement Program
  • $40 million for Epidemiology and Laboratory Capacity
  • $1.90 billion for Refugee and Entrant Assistance
  • $677.7 million for Title V Maternal and Child Health Services Block Grant
  • $176 million for Polio Eradication
  • $606.5 billion in military spending to continue to rebuild our military
  • $30 million for Spinal Cord Injury Research Program, to further research at centers like The Miami Project to Cure Paralysis
  • 2.6% pay raise for the troops
  • Adds 16,400 active duty, guard, and reserve troops to military-end strength
  • $606.5 billion to support baseline operations, including those at U.S. Southern Command and Homestead Air Reserve Base
  • $67.9 billion to continue Overseas Contingency Operations and Global War on Terrorism efforts
  • $148 billion for new equipment purchases and modernization including:
    • $24.2 billion for 13 more ships for the Navy including destroyers and submarines, to continue our path to the optimal 355-ship Navy
    • Over $20 billion for aircraft across the Department of Defense
    • 93 F-35 fighters for the Air Force, in addition to a host of other support aircraft including surveillance and tankers
    • $100 million for initial procurement of a Light Attack aircraft to augment our counterterrorism operations and increase our compatibility with allies
    • $1.5 billion in upgrades to the Army’s Abrams tanks
  • $96.1 billion for research and development of cutting-edge technologies, which will result in the new B-21 bomber, updated ballistic missile systems and continued progress in our space launch program
  • $881 million to support the military’s drug interdiction and counter-drug activities
  • Much-needed military support to allies and partners including Israel ($500 million) and Ukraine ($250 million)