Sen. Kelly Secures Funding for Key Arizona Priorities in Annual Budget Bill

Funds will support law enforcement and border security

Federal funding bill also boost Pell Grants and workforce development programs, improve Arizona wildfire recovery, water infrastructure and climate resilience, and support Arizona seniors

Today, Arizona Senator Mark Kelly secured funding for key Arizona priorities in the annual budget bill which funds the federal government through Fiscal Year 2023. Kelly worked with Republicans and Democrats to pass investments that will strengthen our national defense, enhance public safety and border security, boost educational and workforce development programs, improve water infrastructure and climate resilience, support seniors saving for retirement, and protect Arizona lands. 

The Flagstaff area will also receive significant disaster relief funds to assist with recovery from the Tunnel and Pipeline fires, and the bill advances Kelly’s priorities including funding for the CHIPS Act to bring microchip manufacturing back to America and for the PACT Act to provide health care to veterans exposed to toxins during their service.  

It also includes bills introduced by Kelly, the Family Attribution Modernization Actthe Arizona Experiment Station Land Conveyance Act, the Sunset Crater Volcano National Monument Boundary Adjustment Act, as well as the Kelly-cosponsored Electoral Count Act and Presidential Transition Improvement Act. 

“After hearing from Arizona leaders and working with Republicans and Democrats, we’re glad to have secured critical dollars that will keep our communities safe, help us address the border crisis, invest in our national defense and servicemembers, and boost economic opportunities and quality of life for Arizonans across our state. I’ll keep working with anyone in the Senate to ensure Arizona remains the best place to live, work, and raise a family,” said Senator Kelly.  

For a breakdown of Arizona projects across the state funded through Kelly’s Congressionally Directed Spending requests, click HERE

See a breakdown of key funding Kelly secured in the budget bill below: 


Securing the Southern Border

In keeping with his commitment to supporting border communities and tackling the border crisis, Kelly worked with Senator Sinema to push for additional funding for border security and management, securing key funding in the annual budget bill: 

· Funding to hire 300 additional Border Patrol personnel; 

· $800 million for a new CBP Shelter and Services Program to support local communities and non-profits that assist with border management; 

· $150 million for border technology to effectively monitor and secure the border; 

· Over $70 million for technology at ports of entry to reduce wait times while increasing screening capabilities to stop the flow of drugs and guns, and boosting security; 

· A requirement for the administration to report on the conditions of the border as well as provide a Department of Homeland Security report on its actions outlined in its border response preparedness plan to manage a migrant influx based on Kelly’s Border Response Resilience Act

Funding for Law Enforcement, Public Safety 

Kelly, the son of two cops, passed additional funding for law enforcement programs that have benefitted Arizona law enforcement and public safety, including: 

· $662.8 million in funding for the Community Oriented Policing Services (COPS) Office grant program which awards grants to hire law enforcement officers, develop and test innovative policing strategies, and more;

· $770.8 million for Byrne Memorial Justice Assistance Grants which provide states, tribes, and local governments with critical funding necessary to support programs ranging from crime prevention to prosecution. 


Improving Workforce and College Readiness

Kelly worked with Republicans and Democrats to pass investments that improve workforce and college readiness including: 

· $1.8 billion in new funding to implement Kelly’s bipartisan CHIPS Act of 2022 including $125 million to fund science, technology, engineering, and math (STEM) education initiatives and $2 million for the Barry Goldwater Scholarship and Excellence in Education Foundation which will help deepen the bench of talent in STEM careers;

· $1.4 billion for career and technical education (CTE) state grants and Kelly-supported language to study the CTE teacher pipeline; 

· $1.33 billion for Nita Lowey 21st Century Learning Centers, the only federal funding source dedicated to out-of-school programming, to help students recover from pandemic learning disruptions; 

· Increasing the maximum Pell Grant award by $500 to $7,395 – the largest increase in more than a decade; 

· $12 billion for Head Start programs which promote children’s development through program services that support early learning, health, and family well-being. 


Support for Seniors, Expanding Access to Healthcare, Substance Abuse Treatment 

Kelly passed key funding to support seniors, expand access to health services in Arizona’s tribal communities, and make health care and substance abuse treatment for Arizonans more accessible including:  

·       $6.9 billion for the Indian Health Service to reduce wait times, construct and staff hospitals in areas that currently lack access to health care, better equip health facilities with medical equipment like mammogram machines and modernize health records; 

· A $100 million increase for Older Americans Act (OAA) nutrition programs for seniors; 

· A two-year extension of Medicare coverage for telehealth; 

· A $100 million increase for the Substance Abuse Prevention and Treatment Block Grant and permanent authorization of the State Opioid Response Grants; 

· $1.075 billion to support affordable housing for low-income seniors; 

· Improved access to substance use disorder treatment by cutting bureaucratic red tape for physicians, expanding Medicare coverage of certain mental health provider types, and increasing outreach and education on available mental health and substance use disorder services. 

Increasing Retirement Plan Participation

Kelly worked to include provisions to help workers save for retirement and support small businesses in providing strong retirement benefits. It includes Kelly’s Family Attribution Modernization Act to modernize state laws that make it harder for women small business owners to help their employees save for retirement. This is part of a retirement security package that includes automatic employee enrollment into a retirement plan, raises the age for required minimum distributions from certain retirement plans, and makes it easier for employees to pay off student loans and save for retirement at the same time.


Prioritizing Funding for Key Arizona Infrastructure Projects

Kelly, who helped negotiate the Bipartisan Infrastructure Law, worked to ensure that the following Arizona projects are prioritized for additional funding in the annual budget bill: 

· The widening of I-10; 

· The building of I-11; 

· The widening of I-17 between Phoenix and Flagstaff; 

· The widening of US-95 in Yuma County; 

· Pinal County North-South Corridor Priority Project; 

· Pima County Sonoran Corridor Priority Project.

Flagstaff Wildfire Relief and Wildfire Suppression Funds

Kelly secured additional funding to assist Flagstaff with the resources needed to mitigate the impacts of the recent Pipeline and Tunnel Fires that burned more than 46,000 acres of land. Thanks to Kelly’s work, the annual budget bill includes $17.7 million in disaster relief for the Pipeline Fire and $21.8 million for the Tunnel Fire Kelly also secured $42 million for watershed restoration and $3.5 million for road and bridge repairs. The bill also includes a total of $4.4 billion for wildfire suppression, a 14 percent increase over the previous year, to better prepare for the increase in damaging fires.  

Protecting Arizona’s Precious Water Resources

In keeping with his commitment to securing Arizona’s water future, Kelly successfully included the following in the annual budget bill: 

· $50 million to fully fund the Lower Basin Drought Contingency; 

· An additional $3 million for abandoned mine cleanup projects in the West; 

· $65 million for WaterSMART grants that promote water efficiency and conservation; 

· New investments to advance research into PFAS contamination and support PFAS monitoring.  

Arizona Lands Bills

The annual budget bill includes Kelly’s bill to transfer Forest Service land to the University of Arizona at fair market value to complete the working ranch for the livestock veterinary program. It also includes Kelly’s bill to transfer the Forest Service land that houses the Sunset Crater National Monument visitor center and access road to the National Park Service to streamline maintenance and improvements.