Rep. Johnson Votes for Bipartisan Package to Re-open Government, with $1.6 Billion for Border Security
WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, Rep. Hank Johnson (GA-04) voted for a new bipartisan package to re-open government and provide $1.6 billion for key border security initiatives. The bipartisan package is based on legislation previously negotiated between House and Senate Republicans and Democrats prior to the shutdown.
“We are 34 days into a senseless shutdown that is endangering our security and threatening our economy, because the President and Republicans in the Senate insist on holding the American people hostage to a wasteful, ineffective wall,” said Rep. Johnson. “I’m working every day to end this shutdown and deliver effective border security solutions. The Senate needs to send this bipartisan package to re-open government and secure our border to the President’s desk.”
The package includes $1.6 billion in key border security-related measures, as follows:
- $524.2 million for improvements in ports of entry: The Financial Services and General Government bill includes $524.2 million for investments in ports of entry, in order to meet the latest security requirements, improve border security, and increase capacity for vehicular traffic.
- $563.4 million for additional immigration judges: The Commerce-Justice-Science bill in the package includes $563.4 million to accelerate the recruitment and hiring of additional immigration judges, in order to address the backlog in processing immigration cases.
- $527 million for assistance to Central America: The State-Foreign Operations-Related Programs bill includes $527 million for assistance to Central America, a critical investment in addressing conditions in Central American countries that many migrants are fleeing from.
The package funds all agencies outside Homeland Security through September 30. It also includes language ensuring federal employees who are working without pay or who have been furloughed receive back pay.